Hospital Bans Black Nurses From Caring for White Baby at Father's Request - page 4

by Not_A_Hat_Person 39,822 Views | 278 Comments

Customer service run amok. I'm a Black nurse in a very white state. During my tour of Nursing Home Hell, one resident added a note to his chart saying "Caucasian caregivers only." Oddly enough, he didn't mind when he... Read More


  1. 1
    Quote from ThePrincessBride
    Also, I have a problem with the title of thread. The hospital didn't ban black nurses from caring for the white baby, the baby's father did. Big difference.
    That's an accurate title based on the formal complaint by the plaintiff and her lawyer.

    The events were:
    - father refused an African American nurse (plaintiff) to take care of his baby
    - charge nurse called nursing manager who accommodated the father's request and told the charge nurse to change the plaintiff's assigment
    - sign on nursing assignments the next day state "no African American nurses to care for Baby X"
    - plaintiff is suing the hospital
    tayloramaRN2be likes this.
  2. 0
    Normally, I hate lawsuits. But in this case, maybe it be for the better. I'm against racism (or any "ism") in all forms, and if it takes a lawsuit to combat it in hospitals then so be it. I wonder though, does the hospital actually have the legal grounds to tell a "customer" that they "have to take their business elsewhere?" If they do, then I hope this nurse takes them for millions! If they don't have the right to do so, then it is not the hospitals fault-it is the Governments fault. If that is the case then I'm not sure how soaking money out of the hospital will help-they will be required to do the same thing in the future by law, anyway.
  3. 4
    ...just to put things in a different perspective, Hurley Medical Center is a city-owned Level I Trauma Center in Flint, Michigan, a city with almost 70% African American residents per the 2010 Census.
    tewdles, shoegalRN, tayloramaRN2be, and 1 other like this.
  4. 0
    1 less responsibility!!!
  5. 0
    If they don't have the right to do so, then it is not the hospitals fault-it is the Governments fault. If that is the case then I'm not sure how soaking money out of the hospital will help-they will be required to do the same thing in the future by law, anyway.
    But I don't think the hospital *is* able to do it by law. WHich is why the hospital attorneys got involved, and then the hospital changed their stance.
  6. 4
    Quote from cueballRN
    For people who say they are outraged, as a male nurse there have been several occasions where the patient wanted a female nurse and did not want to have me. Was I outraged? Did I sue my hospital? No. For those outraged, is gender discrimination not as bad as racial? Or is my situation ok just because I'm a man, and its not a female being discriminated against?

    This woman sounds like somebody just fishing for a nice payout from their employer before retiring.
    cueballRn, man I understand what you're getting at. But your situation IS a little different. Care from you is refused out of gender modesty-this is not hate or bigotry. There are even some men who are by no means sexist, but are uncomfortable with a female medical provider seeing and touching their private areas. This is not meant to be insulting to anyone. BUT, someone not wanting you to have contact with their baby solely due to your race (or gender or anything else that you were born into) IS insulting. It is wrong!

    Who knows, maybe the nurse is just seizing the opportunity in hopes of a nice payday (though I'm not necessarily agreeing that this is the case- hell, I'm ****** over the situation and I wasn't even involved.), but her points are very valid.

    Now to answer your questions, "For those outraged, is gender discrimination not as bad as racial? Or is my situation ok just because I'm a man, and its not a female being discriminated against?," the answers are "Yes," Gender discrimination IS as bad as racism. Let's say that you were told by your management that a pt or a pt's parent doesn't even want you taking their or their childs blood pressure because you are a man. THAT would be just as bad as racism (though still it would be situational. Lets say the pt was assaulted by a man previously, or had some other traumatic event happen to them involving men, then I don't think it would be unreasonable for you to step aside for a female nurse to take the pt). And "No," it is not ok just because you are a man to be discriminated against. But if the reason you are asked to make way for a female nurse is due to gender modesty, then that is NOT discrimination.
    Last edit by PRICHARILLAisMISSED on Feb 16, '13 : Reason: de pluralized a word
    NYCGuy86, gummi bear, chivon101, and 1 other like this.
  7. 0
    Quote from klone
    But I don't think the hospital *is* able to do it by law. WHich is why the hospital attorneys got involved, and then the hospital changed their stance.
    If that is the case and the hospital was not required to acquiesce to the racist parent then I hope the Nurse takes them for millions. Maybe that'll wake up the rest of the hospitals so they will cease those kinds of actions.
  8. 0
    Quote from Bortaz, RN
    I'm a white dude (and a minority by a LONG shot where I live), and I have been removed from caring for a baby twice at the request of parents. Once because I was a dude, and once because I was white and they wanted only Hispanic nurses.

    I neither sued nor ended up on CNN either time. Hmm. Maybe I should have. Or maybe I should have gone on about my business, not letting it bother me...just as I did.
    The problem with just ignoring it and going about you business is that nothing gets done to fix the problem that way. I believe that is all of our jobs, everyone single one of us as part of a collective society to do our parts to fix problems such as these. While I know we all cant be responsible for fixing everything, we can fix what's in front of us.
  9. 2
    Quote from gcupid
    1rst question.... Are you black? 2nd question. If you are a black man, do you affiliate yourself with being a black man?. I know in order to fish one must have patience, but surely the nurse with 25 years of service could possibly have some merit in seeking the claim. I'm pretty sure it's not her first time experiencing examples of ignorance but just maybe the accommodating of ignorance by the facility became tiresome. Everyone has their breaking point.
    I'm not sure what his race has to do with his post at all. I thought it was a legitimate question. Why would you care whether or not he a) is Black or b) identifies himself as a Black man?

    BTW, good points on the rest of the post.
  10. 1
    Legally, they CANNOT accommodate based on race.

    About 8 years ago, I worked at a hospital that the father did not want ANY BLACKS on the unit when his wife was giving birth to his child. The units and higher ups did "the customer is always right" and sent all of the staff that was black home. This was at a Magnet hospital. It got wind, and the NAACP and ACLU jumped in. Precedent for a policy to not allow those request based on bias to be allowed, with exception to religious reasons.

    Last time I recalled, Neo-Nazis, Skinheads, and the KKK were not in the list of religious organizations. Please enlighten me if they are...

    I am African American/Black. I never had any one deny care from me because of my ethnicity; however, one 20 y.o. pt denied me because he wanted someone "older"... I had suspicions because he befriended a Neo-Nazi I took care of, and had an excellent relationship with pretty much everyone, regardless of race. This is in a Rehab hospital, so the stay is at least 3 months, so you get to know the people that are basically your peers, and your caregivers. He had asked me WHY I was taking care of "Tim" and was asking probing question, but hit with the old boundary and HIPPA lines. Mind you, this was BEFORE I ever took care if him, about a week before. I got him that night, and he seemed very uncomfortable, yet stayed on the call bell, requested meds he could not have, fully explained that to him, etc.

    He had enough of me by 1 am...took him two hrs, lol. I thought back to that conversation, but it did not bother me at all. He got a nurse who was "older", like "mom older" (that's what he requested)...he had to talk to the nursing supervisor (who was black) and he was apologetic, flustered, etc, didn't want to make it about race, race doesn't matter, etc. (I was eavesdropping outside), but he got what he wanted, but went out of his way to be nice to me whenever I saw him. This was about 6 years ago.

    If it was based on race preference, I was unaffected about it...I came from a hospital that had to set a precedence about treating your black caregivers equally. I am fully aware of the "alleged challenges" that my ethnicity can cause...I guess I always take the high road of "better to avoid me" karma syndrome...I'm going to give excellent care, and you can watch me have a family profusely thank me and treat me well.

    Currently, in my new position, (Magnet...everywhere in my area ) there was a presentation about diversity, respecting their diverse employment make-up. The presentation/discussion was for an hour, emphasizing how they do not tolerate racism, etc, take accusations seriously, etc, and they will tell people that they are welcome to go somewhere else...this hospital has the "luxury" (shrugs) of practicing what they preach...they take care of over 100 nationalities, and have staff of a heavily minority make up, in a predominantly black city-if racial bias to outright racism were to be expected, it would tarnish their rep. Not saying that this hospital would do that, but a lot of hospitals are putting the bottom line over their employees, and certainly for not the right reasons...and this is number ONE.

    IMO, this would be an excellent precedence if this victory were to occur. In this day and age in our difficult times, we can all attest that most if the time the color that matters the most is green...so it's best that his hospital lose that 3-figure hospital bill, rather than have to pay a seven-eight figure settlement and legal costs and fines based on discrimination.
    JillyRN likes this.


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