A prominent religious liberty group is helping 17 medical professionals sue New York state in federal court for alleged civil rights violations in imposing vaccine mandates.
Attorneys for the Thomas More Society filed the lawsuit on Monday in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, calling the state’s health worker vaccine mandates “patently unconstitutional” and an attempt “to nullify protections for sincere religious beliefs granted under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”
“What New York is attempting to do is slam shut an escape hatch from an unconstitutional vaccine mandate,” Thomas More Society special counsel Christopher Ferrara wrote in a statement. “And they are doing this while, knowing that many people have sincere religious objections to vaccines that were tested, developed, or produced with cell lines derived from aborted children.”
The Thomas More Society is a national not-for-profit law firm dedicated to restoring respect in law for life, family and religious liberty.
Ferrara is representing the 17 healthcare workers along with Peter Breen, Thomas More Society vice president and senior counsel, senior counsel Stephen Crampton and counsel Michael McHale.
“This is a brazen power grab by people who think they can get away with anything,” Ferrara said.
Before he resigned, then-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo required all healthcare workers in the state, including staff at hospitals and long-term care facilities such as nursing homes, adult care centers and other congregate care settings, to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
That violates federal anti-discrimination law, Ferrara argues in the lawsuit.
The attorneys seek a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction, and then a final injunction against the mandate for not allowing religious exemptions.
“Never in the history of New York state, never in the history of the world, has a government sought to forcibly impose mass vaccination on an entire class of people under threat of immediate personal and professional destruction,” Ferrara said. “This is just another example of how COVID regimes are completely out of control. The federal judiciary has a duty under the Constitution to put a straitjacket on this institutional insanity.”
The medical professionals filing the complaint are doing so under pseudonyms because of “the fear and loathing of the unvaccinated and the hysteria that surrounds vaccine mania.”
“These plaintiffs are not — I repeat, not — anti-vaxxers, as the fake news media calls them,” Ferrara said.
“They are in fact in favor of voluntary vaccination with informed consent, but they oppose jack-booted coercion by the state to take a vaccine their religion forbids them to take. This is America, not Red China.”
The healthcare workers — doctors, nurses, a medical technician and a physician’s liaison — are at risk of losing their jobs, Ferrara concluded.
“Without court intervention, these health professionals face loss of occupation, professional status, and employability anywhere in the state of New York — all because of an abortion-connected vaccine, one that they cannot take in good conscience,” Ferrara said.