In Sweden, a woman who wants to destroy her unborn child has the authority to force a midwife to carry out the act, even if it violates her religious faith.
That’s the takeaway from a court ruling from the district court of Jonkoping County Council.
The ruling went against a midwife who was “unjustly denied employment by three different medical clinics because she will not assist with abortions,” according to the Alliance Defending Freedom, which filed a brief in the case.
WND reported in 2014 that Ellinor Grimmark lost a job offer at a hospital in the town of Eksjo because she wouldn’t do abortions.
Then another hospital where she sought employment also reneged on a promise to hire her for the same reason, she said.
“They have said that because I do not perform abortions, I cannot work as midwife,” she said at the time. “In my contact with my employer or a prospective employer, I have talked very carefully about my inability to perform abortions based on my Christian faith, my sincere religious conviction. My employer has not been willing to discuss the issue further.”
She brought a complaint to Sweden’s anti-discrimination office with the help of the human rights group Provita and the Alliance Defending Freedom.
The court agreed with a statement from a “discrimination ombudsman,” according to ADF, which acknowledged her rights had been violated but determined the right to an abortion had greater weight.
“No one deserves to suffer discrimination and be denied employment because their conscience does not allow them to perform abortions,” said Roger Kiska, the international senior legal counsel for ADF.
“We are disappointed the court did not affirm Swedish law and international law to which Sweden is obligated and that both recognize freedom of conscience in the workplace. Medical facilities should not force midwives to violate their conscience by requiring them to assist in abortion,” he said.
The case developed in 2013 when Höglandssjukhuset women’s clinic withdrew a job offer to Grimmark based on her religious faith.
The second location, Ryhovs women’s clinic, also rejected her, saying “a person who refuses to perform abortions does not belong at a women’s clinic.”
Then in January, Värnamo Hospital’s women’s clinic offered Grimmark a job but then reneged.
The ADF International brief noted that under the specifications from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, “no person, hospital or institution shall be coerced, held liable or discriminated against in any manner because of a refusal to perform, accommodate, assist or submit to an abortion, the performance of a human miscarriage, or euthanasia or any act which could cause the death of a human fetus or embryo, for any reason.”
Robert Clark, also with ADF, said medical centers should respect the conviction that midwives and nurses should not be required to do abortions to be employed.