A nonprofit law firm is hitting back at the city of St. Louis over a local ordinance that purportedly discriminates against people who hold pro-life beliefs.
The Thomas More Society represents a group of plaintiffs that includes a home for pregnant women, a group of Catholic grade schools, and a for-profit holding company and its owner in the case. The firm has filed a lawsuit against the city because of the rule.
The city's Ordinance 70459 gives people who advocate or are in favor of abortion "protected class" status, which the Thomas More Society concludes is discriminatory toward people with opposing beliefs.
"The city has taken the protections typically granted to prevent discrimination for 'race, age, religion, sex, or disability' and applied them to anyone who has made or expects to make 'reproductive health decisions,' where that term is defined so broadly as to include the decision to support, advocate for, or even perform abortions," Sarah Pitlyk, counsel for the Thomas More Society, said in a statement from the group.
"This legislative overreaction to alleged — but entirely unsubstantiated — 'discrimination' is a thinly-veiled political tactic intended to silence those who seek to protect the unborn."
Pitlyk noted that the ordinance would force people with pro-life views to do business with companies and organizations that provide abortions.
"This law, which claims to address discrimination, is blatantly discriminatory against those who believe that abortion is harmful and whose religious beliefs hold it to be a grave evil," Pitlyk said.
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