Target Responds…

**This is a long one today folks. If you don’t care to hear it, skip on down. **

So I finally got a response from Target today. (I ranted about Target allowing pharmacist’s to refuse filling prescriptions if it conflicted w/their “religious beliefs”.) While I still don’t quite agree w/their approach, I am heartened to know there are some limitations to this so called allowance. Here is the email I got to today in it’s entirety.

Dear Target Guest

In our ongoing effort to provide great service to our guests, Target consistently ensures that prescriptions for the emergency contraceptive Plan B are filled. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 also requires us to accommodate our team members’ sincerely held religious beliefs.

In the rare event that a pharmacist’s beliefs conflict with filling a guest’s prescription for the emergency contraceptive Plan B, our policy requires our pharmacists to take responsibility for ensuring that the guest’s prescription is filled in a timely and respectful manner, either by another Target pharmacist or a different pharmacy.

The emergency contraceptive Plan B is the only medication for which this policy applies.
Under no circumstances can the pharmacist prevent the prescription from being filled, make discourteous or judgmental remarks, or discuss his or her religious beliefs with the guest.

Target abides by all state and local laws and, in the event that other laws conflict with our policy, we follow the law.

We’re surprised and disappointed by Planned Parenthood’s negative campaign. We’ve been talking with Planned Parenthood to clarify our policy and reinforce our commitment to ensuring that our guests’ prescriptions for the emergency contraceptive Plan B are filled. Our policy is similar to that of many other retailers and follows the recommendations of the American Pharmacists Association. That’s why it’s unclear why Target is being singled out.

We’re committed to meeting the needs of our female guests and will continue to deliver upon that commitment.


Jennifer Hanson
Target Executive Offices

I always like to get both sides to a story before I go off on a rampage. It is disappointing to see they do in fact allow it to happen. They try to make nicey nicey w/the part about making sure the prescription gets filled by someone. Well, it just ain’t right in my book. Supposedly, it only applies to contraceptives of a certain type but I have a sneaky suspicion in rural areas this rule takes on a whole new meaning.

I rarely get to Target (tar-zshay) anymore as we don’t have one here in SF. However, I often buy things from their website. I can’t say if that will continue knowing that they allow such despicable behavior. Even if it is only having to due w/contraceptives.

2 thoughts on “Target Responds…”

  1. Moby,

    Do you also know that Target has 4 areas that they donate funds to? Did you know they have chosen GLBT organizations as one of their prime focuses? Above of A LOT of others?

    Allowing a Pharmacist to exercise a religious belief is a pretty damn cool thing to do. In fact, it is standard practice across the nation as she stated above.

    Now, did that Target store in question actually follow the guidelines she laid out above? I don’t think so. They should have had the 2nd Pharmacist (if there was one) assist the guest or find another Pharmacy for the guest.

    The store itself failed to uphold the Corporation’s policy.

    Aside from the INSANE amount of money the Execs of Target make, I think it’s a good ‘progressive’ company that’s watches out for it’s employee’s rights as well as it’s guests and I’m proud to work for it.

    Even tho you’re holding a grudge against them I still like you!!


  2. I ranted about the pharmacist thing many moons ago when a similar case cropped up in the Great Lakes region.

    I’m not an anti-religious zealot, far from it and I prefer working for an employer that allows me to take time for my religious observance (Pagan) when asked. No big deal. But things such as this pharmacist thing is insidious in the fact that Christian zealots are using it to push an agenda. “Our god says this, so you can’t have it” They don’t believe in abortion so they won’t fill the scrip. But where does it stop?

    They’re also against gays, so will they stop filling HIV med scrips too? How about STD scrips? Obviously sex is “sin” so if you got an STD you committed a sin and are being punished by their “god”. It could go on and on.

    That said, I think these pharmacists were disingenuous when they went into any medical field. If their “faith” prohibits them from doing their job, then perhaps they should go to work for a Christian-only pharmacy or medical center where they will not be pressured into these kinds of situations. And Pharmacies need to make stronger policies and statements that if their pharmacists refuse to fill a doctors prescription, something will be done immediatly to help the customer.

    Things like this make me ill.

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