Valerie Kloosterman alleged in the lawsuit that she was ousted from her role as a physician’s assistant at Metropolitan Hospital because she objected to the hospital’s policies regarding transgender patients, reported the New York Post.
Kloosterman argued that referring to patients by their preferred pronouns or recommending to them sex-change drugs or surgeries would have violated her religious beliefs.
However, she clarified in the suit that during her 17 years of working at Metropolitan Hospital she has never “used pronouns contrary to a patient’s wishes” or had a patient interested in sex-change treatments.
But when she asked the hospital if she could opt out of a diversity training on the subject, she was called “evil” and a “liar,” and the diversity manager “blamed her for gender dysphoria-related suicides,” according to the lawsuit.
She was eventually fired over the “dispute about hypotheticals.”
“The letter explaining her termination listed three reasons for firing Ms. Kloosterman, all of which directly related to her sincerely held religious beliefs about gender identity and to her conscientious objection to assisting in the provision of certain ‘gender reassignment’ drugs and procedures,” the lawsuit claims.
“If not for Ms. Kloosterman’s religious beliefs about gender and sexuality, she would not have been fired,” the suit continues.
Kloosterman said that she was “heartbroken” after being pushed out of the hospital.
“I had 17 years that I spent with patients and families, co-workers who sometimes I spent more time with than I did with my own family. And they took that away. They took away the relationships that I had built up, and the people who trusted me for their care,” she said.
A spokesperson for the hospital responded to the suit, saying, “We are confident Ms. Kloosterman’s claims, like those she filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, are without merit.”