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First Liberty Briefing

First Liberty Briefing is an exclusive podcast hosted by First Liberty Institute’s Deputy General Counsel Jeremy Dys. In about 90-seconds, once a week, Jeremy recalls the stories that have shaped America’s religious liberty, from the founding era to current legal battles and more. It’s an insider’s look at the stories, cases, people, and laws that have made America the world’s leader in protecting religious liberty.
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Jun 6, 2018

Houston health care company fired young Catholic immigrant, Alexia Palma, for being unwilling to promote contraception. Learn more about Alexia’s story at FirstLiberty.org/Briefing.


Alexia Palma had a rough childhood, but her grandparents introduced her to the Catholic faith where she found both meaning and comfort.

After college, Alexia found a job working as a health educator in a health clinic located in inner-city Houston, Texas. She taught courses on general nutrition, high blood pressure, glucose intolerance, diabetes, a series of classes on becoming a mom, and several others.  One of the other courses was a class on family planning in which Alexia would be required to teach about birth control.  That presented a problem, since her Catholic faith morally opposes birth control.

She voiced that concern to her supervisors, and they quickly arranged a simple accommodation, recognizing that this course was less than 2% of her job and accommodating her religious beliefs did not present an undue hardship on the company.

That worked for 18 months, until new management took over.  The new management ended the accommodation, its vice-president told her that employees are required to “put aside” their “personal beliefs” at work, and insisted that she either do so or be terminated.  Alexia refused and was fired.

First Liberty Institute filed a charge of discrimination with the EEOC on Alexia’s behalf. Federal law requires employers to at least try to accommodate the religious beliefs of their employees—especially when less than 2% of their job requires accommodation.

To learn how First Liberty is protecting religious liberty for all Americans, visit FirstLiberty.org.

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