Settlement reached in 'No African American nurse' case

Settlement reached in 'No African American nurse' case

Posted: Updated:
FLINT, Mich. (WJBK) -

Hurley Medical Center settled a lawsuit with one of its nurses who accused the hospital of allowing a patient to refuse care given by African Americans.

The nurse, Tonya Battle, was caring for an infant patient last fall in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Battle says the patient's father requested that no African Americans care for his child - and pulled up his sleave showing a tattoo believed to be a swastika. Battle, who is black, says the patient's file then had a note that read, "No African American nurse to take care of baby."

Battle says she and all other black nurses were no longer assigned to the child's care. Two other nurses who were unable to provide care took legal action as well as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

As part of the settlement the hospital pledged to educate its staff and provide diversity training. The hospital's CEO says all 1,600 employees have already gone through the training. The hospital will also launch programs for local teens interested in health care and provide scholarships.

Battle still works in the Neonatal Unit and has been at the hospital for 25 years.

The terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

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