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Federal court rules Union Pacific must cover contraceptives in health plan

[JURIST] US District Judge for the District of Nebraska Laurie Smith Camp [official profile] ruled Monday that Union Pacific Railroad [official website] discriminated against women by covering a range of preventive drugs, but not contraception, in its health care plan. Planned Parenthood [advocacy website] supported the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, alleging that the failure to cover contraception violated the federal Civil Rights Act [Title VII text] regarding employers of more than 15 people making decision based upon pregnancy or gender. Camp found the plan discriminatory "because it treats medical care women need to prevent pregnancy less favorably than it treats medical care needed to prevent other medical conditions that are no greater threat to employees' health than is pregnancy." Mark Davis, spokesman for Union Pacific, said the railroad would appeal the decision on several grounds, noting that the exclusion of contraceptives from the health plan was negotiated with the company's unions. AP has more.

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