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District ordered to assist nursing students on COVID issue

November 9, 2021 GMT

PHOENIX (AP) — A judge has ordered the Maricopa County Community College District to accommodate two nursing students who objected on religious grounds to completing required brief clinical rotations at a hospital that requires the shots.

U.S. District Judge Steven Logan on Friday granted a request by Mesa Community College students Emily Thoms and Kamaleilani Moreno for a preliminary injunction, the Arizona Republic reported.

The case will continue but for now, the district must accommodate the students so they can fulfill the clinical parts of their coursework and graduate as scheduled in December, according to the judge.

Logan’s order said the district’s vaccination policy “undoubtedly places substantial pressure on them to modify their behavior in violation of their beliefs.”

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Both students said they felt relieved by that, even though they didn’t immediately know what the district will do.

The district said in a statement that it was evaluating the ruling and considering its options.

The district had argued in court that it couldn’t easily switch the students or accommodate virtual simulated clinical shifts.