Nurse Barred From Treating Infant Due to Skin Color

BY: - 19 Feb '13 | On the Web

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Photo Credit: ernstl via Flickr

Photo Credit: ernstl via Flickr

Imagine being so rooted in your prejudices that you would not allow a medical provider of a certain ethnicity to treat your child. Apparently, this occurs more often that one might think. Recently, a lawsuit was filed against a Michigan hospital after, Tonya Battle, a nurse was barred from taking care of an infant patient because of her skin color.

In the complaint, obtained by the local TV station, Battle claims that the newborn’s father showed her supervisor “a swastika of some kind” and asked that no black people be involved in his child’s care.

Battle, who was taken off the case, was allegedly later told by a supervisor that the patient’s request was granted. The suit also states that a note was appended to the patient’s file that read “No African American nurse to take care of baby.”

Currently the nurse is seeking “compensatory damages” for emotional stress and possible “harm to her reputation.” For more on this story visit The Huffington Post.

BMWK — Do you think parents have a right to request who is and isn’t allowed to treat their child? Do you think the nurse’s decision to file a lawsuit was appropriate?


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  • Jason

    That’s a tough call. I reserve the right to refuse to allow a person who I believe would cause me or my family harm to treat one of us. A person chooses to wear a swastika and accept all connotations associated with the symbol, but one does not choose his skin color.
    I feel it would be acceptable to refuse to allow this swastika person to treat my child, and reprehensible for them to refuse to allow a black person the same, but I will respect their desire to choose who contacts their child in order to defend my own desire to do the same.

  • mike

    It’s very sad that we live in a society full of hate. Very sad!! This is 2013 and people still have hate towards Black people. We might as well face it. America is a racist society!