Outten & Golden: Empowering Employees in the Workplace

Hobby Lobby Ruling Puts Ideology Over Sound Health Policy

July 3rd, 2014 | Dian Palmer

Dian PalmerThe Supreme Court today sided with corporate interest over the health of working people in their ruling in the Hobby Lobby case.

Nurses know how important the relationship between a patient and their healthcare provider is in ensuring the best healthcare outcomes. Allowing politics and ideology to define healthcare policy is a bad prescription for women’s health.

Depending on where you work, the court’s ruling allows your boss to make decisions about your healthcare based on his or her religious beliefs. As a nurse who spent 25 years on the front lines of care, I know this is not sound health policy.

This ruling harms millions of women and puts them in real economic and emotional distress. Access to certain reproductive health services will now depend on where you work and how much you make.

Women across the country will now be forced to make tough choices between using recommended forms of birth control and keeping gas in the car or food on the table.

SEIU nurses fought for decades for healthcare reform. While this is a disappointment, it is not the end of our fight. Across the country, we vow to fight back and continue to advocate for the health of our patients.

Dian Palmer is actively involved in improving working conditions and patient care. Currently, she is President of SEIU Healthcare Wisconsin and an Executive Board Member of SEIU. She is a member of the Milwaukee Chapter Black Nurses Association, and a Governor’s Appointee to the State of Wisconsin Minimum Wage Task Force. In addition, she serves as a member of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin Board, the UWHCA Public Authority Board of Directors and the Wisconsin Citizen Action Board of Directors.

This post originally appeared on the SEIU Blog on June 30, 2014. Reprinted with permission.

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