nounchiefly North American
- A clause in a law providing for exemption or other allowances on the grounds of moral or religious conscience: Congress passed a ‘conscience clause’ bill, which permitted any individual or hospital opposed to abortion to refuse to perform the procedureMore example sentences
- One judge has suggested that a doctor who invokes the conscience clause should refer the patient to a colleague at once but he did not go so far as to decide that there was a legal duty to do so because that was not in issue in the case.
- Section 3 is a conscience clause, allowing anyone to opt out of the ‘medical procedure’ mentioned in section 1.
- Additionally the debate about reinstating the conscience clause, which would allow dioceses to refuse to ordain or recognize women clergy, has been resurrected.
More definitions of conscience clauseDefinition of conscience clause in:
- The US English dictionary