UPDATE: Tulsa court grants Oklahoma Attorney General’s request for restraining order against Ascension Healthcare over COVID-19 vaccines

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UPDATE: A Tulsa District Court judge granted Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor’s request for a temporary restraining order on Ascension Healthcare’s termination of employees who were allegedly not given religious exemption from its COVID-19 vaccine requirement.

The Attorney General’s Office released the following statement to KFOR:

“This evening, the Tulsa District Court granted the State’s Application for Temporary Restraining Order in our case to keep Ascension Healthcare from carrying out its plan to fire employees who were unfairly denied religious exemptions from their nationwide COVID-19 vaccination mandate. This is a win for religious freedom and our office will continue to fight against unlawful religious discrimination.”

OKLAHOMA ATTORNEY GENERAL’S OFFICE

Original Story

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) — Oklahoma’s Attorney General continues to push back against vaccine mandates by healthcare providers.

In a news release on Friday, AG John O’Connor announced he is targeting Ascension Healthcare which operates facilities in Oklahoma, and 18 other states.

According to O’Connor the company mandated that all healthcare workers receive a COVID-19 vaccine by November 12. He says employees were not given a religious exemption.

In the lawsuit, the state asks for an emergency temporary restraining order to stop the terminations.

“We will not tolerate any form of religious discrimination against Oklahomans who seek reasonable accommodations from vaccine mandates based on their sincerely held religious beliefs,” Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor said.

Ascension Healthcare sent KFOR this response:

“As a leading healthcare provider, we continue to put the safety of our associates and those we are privileged to serve at the forefront of everything we do. This is why we have required our associates to receive both the COVID-19 vaccine and the influenza vaccine. 

We want patients to be assured and comforted with the knowledge that our doctors and nurses, other clinicians and associates, working in one of our hospitals or other sites of care, will either be vaccinated against both COVID-19 and influenza, or in the instances of exemptions or accommodations, be complying with additional infection prevention protocols.  Patients and their loved ones should have that peace of mind as they entrust us with their care.”

Nick Ragone
EVP, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer

The State of Oklahoma has also filed a lawsuit against the federal government to stop its mandatory vaccination requirement against COVID-19.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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