A Christian doctor with 17 years of experience at a Michigan hospital is now suing her former employer, claiming they fired her and called her “bad” when she asked not to use transgender pronouns because it went against her religious beliefs.
Valerie Kloosterman worked as an assistant physician for Michigan Health for 17 years before she was reportedly fired after seeking an exemption from referring patients for transgender surgery or calling people “she” on religious grounds.
Ms Kloosterman, a mother of four, including triplets, had asked to be placed in a religious facility so that she would not have to use transgender pronouns or be referred for “gender transition” drugs and procedures.
But the University of Michigan Health-West hospital denied Ms. Kloosterman the religious accommodation and is said to have discharged her on August 24, 2021, for refusing to adhere to their policies on transgender patients.
Ms Kloosterman, who had never had an incident during her 17-year tenure, is now suing the hospital because she believes her dismissal was the result of “unlawful religious discrimination,” according to court documents filed in the U.S. District Court for the United States. Western District of Michigan.
Valerie Kloosterman spent 17 years as a physician assistant for Michigan Health before she was reportedly fired after seeking an exemption from referring patients for transgender surgery or calling people “she” on religious grounds.
It all came to a head when the University of Michigan Health-West Hospital instituted mandatory diversity training for employees.
“Two of the questions that year were very specific to confirm that gender was fluid, and I had to tick the box,” Ms Kloosterman said. Fox news.
“It wasn’t an option for me to voice my concerns, and I couldn’t take this mandatory test without answering that question the way they wanted, based on the university’s beliefs, so I voiced my concerns.”
Hostile talks were said to have taken place at the time with the hospital’s diversity, justice and inclusion department.
Ms Kloosterman said of the meeting that officials called her ‘bad’ and a ‘liar’ and that she was even blamed for gender dysphoria-related suicides’.
“I said I’m a Christian, which means I’m a Christian physician assistant, and I can’t honestly answer these questions to God and understand how much harm it can do to my patients; this is not fair’, says Mrs Kloosterman.
“The meeting turned hostile. I was called evil. I was called a liar. And I very compassionately gave my point of what my concern was from a medical point of view from my medical judgment, and also in good conscience to God, and I should never have been asked to compromise my faith in order to do my job.”
Ms Kloosterman, a mother of four, including triplets, had asked to be placed in a religious facility so that she would not have to use transgender pronouns or be referred for “gender transition” drugs and procedures. But the University of Michigan Health-West hospital (file image) denied Ms. Kloosterman the religious accommodation and is said to have fired her on Aug. 24, 2021, for refusing to abide by their policies on transgender patients.
Lawyers from the First Liberty Institute, representing Kloosterman, said in a court filing that the hospital “tried to force Ms. Kloosterman, against her sincere religious beliefs and her medical conscience, to promise that she would speak biology-obscuring pronouns and make references for” gender transition’ drugs and procedures’.
Ms Kloosterman said this was despite the fact that no patient had ever asked her for a referral for such drugs or procedures, and she had “never used a pronoun that conflicted with a patient’s wishes.”
She was later fired on August 24, 2021, tearfully saying goodbye to her colleagues she’d known for nearly twenty years.
“I cry less often, but the tears still come,” she said.
Ms Kloosterman said in a court filing that she was denied any kind of religious accommodation – despite allowing other staff to access it and being exempt from performing certain procedures or prescribing controlled substances such as opioids.
The court alleges that her letter of resignation listed three reasons for Ms. Kloosterman’s resignation, “all of which were directly related to her sincere religious beliefs about gender identity and to her conscientious objection to assisting with the provision of certain ‘gender-adjusting’ drugs and procedures.” ‘.
Her lawyers added, “Without Ms. Kloosterman’s religious beliefs about gender and sexuality, she wouldn’t have been fired.”
A UMH-West spokesperson said in a statement: “University of Michigan Health-West is committed to providing appropriate medical treatment to all patients and respects the religious beliefs of its employees. We believe that Ms. Kloosterman’s claims, such as those she has filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, are unfounded.”