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Woman Fired for Refusing COVID Vaccine Awarded $700K By Federal Jury

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A federal jury has just ruled in favor of a Tennessee woman fired by her employer for refusing to be injected with the experimental COVID vaccine.

Benton cited religious reasons as why she would not get the jab.

The court ruled that Tanja Benton’s former employer, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, must pay her nearly $700,000 as a settlement for violating her rights.

Check it out:

The Washington Examiner reported:

A federal jury found that BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee improperly fired an employee for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine and awarded her nearly $700,000.

The federal jury in the case, which was litigated in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee, found that the insurance company owes the plaintiff, Tanja Benton, $687,240 in backpay and damages after she was let go in 2022.

The judgment order in the case said Benton “proved by a preponderance of the evidence that her refusal to receive the COVID vaccination was based upon a sincerely held religious belief.”

At the height of the pandemic and subsequent rollout of vaccines, both the government and federal companies struggled with how to handle workers who refused to be vaccinated for various reasons, chief among them being concerns about the long-term effects of the new inoculations and religious reasons.

Benton had worked at BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee primarily as a biostatistical research scientist from 2005 through November 2022 before being let go for the refusal, according to WTVC.

Local news outlet WTVC Chattanooga provided some additional details:

A federal jury has determined a woman who was fired for refusing to get a COVID-19 vaccine mandated by her employer, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, is due a settlement worth almost $700,000.

The jury found that Tanja Benton ‘proved by a preponderance of the evidence” that her refusal to get the shot “was based on a sincerely-held religious belief.”

Benton worked at BCBST from 2005 through November of 2022, primarily as a bio statistical research scientist.

Her federal lawsuit said it was not a part of Benton’s job to regularly come into contact with people, saying she had a portfolio of 10 to 12 clients each year, with whom she only interacted with infrequently, and sometimes not in person. It also pointed out that Benton never came into contact with any patients as part of her job.

Like many others, the pandemic changed Benton’s job. She says she worked from home for the next year and a half, without any complaints.

This case sets an excellent precedent.

Everyone who was wrongfully fired for refusing to take an experimental, dangerous vaccine should be entitled to compensation — and such a thing should never happen again.


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