I posted an earlier article about a nurse who refused to take off her cross while working. Of course, lawsuits will ensue. Instead of just hiding it under her shirt, she is fighting for the right to publicly display her cross to the sick that she cares for. Ugh. If her faith is what makes her be a nurse, why doesn't she just leave it at that. Why must religion invade all of our public spaces? It should be a personal choice. I smell a matyr coming on!
Nurse to take legal action over RD&E necklace demands
Shirley Chaplin, 54, from Exeter, has been a nurse for nearly 30 years. She was threatened with disciplinary action after refusing to remove a necklace bearing a cross.
Despite wearing the cross since studying to be a nurse, the Royal Devon & Exeter Trust ordered her to remove it, deeming it a breach of uniform policy and a health risk to her and to patients.
Mrs Chaplin, who has accepted an offer of redeployment “under duress” following a meeting with health bosses yesterday, claimed the demand to remove her cross was nothing to do with health and safety and was an infringement of her human rights.
She said: “This blatant piece of political correctness amounts to the marginalising of employees’ personal human rights.
“It’s a blanket secularising and neutralising of the NHS intended to stop Christians from expressing their faith in the public services of the NHS.”
The Christian Legal Centre (CLC) said Mrs Chaplin was told this week she either accepted redeployment to a non-nursing role or face the sack. Andrea Minichiello Williams, barrister and director of the CLC which is supporting Mrs Chaplin, said: “A nurse was forced, under duress, to agree to stand down from nursing and take up an administrative role.
“Mrs Chaplin was left with no option other than to accept, but has instructed us to file for action at the Employment Tribunal for discrimination by her employers.”
The CLC has instructed barrister Paul Diamond to represent Mrs Chaplin. Mr Diamond advised Caroline Petrie, a nurse who was suspended for offering to pray for a patient and was then reinstated.
A spokesman for the RD&E Trust said necklaces were banned as there was a small risk that confused patients could grab them and cause injury.
Mrs Chaplin was the first member of staff who had refused a request to comply with the policy, it added.
Readers are continuing to debate the issue at www.thisisexeter.co.uk. Marian Snow of Exeter wrote: “This is a Health and Safety issue and nothing else.”
Phil Chivers of Crediton wrote: “You can’t wear a dangly chain if you’re giving close-up care.”
However, Keith Bearne of Ottery St Mary wrote: “It is disgraceful that a nurse should be ordered to remove a crucifix that has been worn for 30 years.”