Michigan Physician Assistant Fired After Seeking Exemptions From Preferred Pronouns, Trans Surgeries


A Michigan physician assistant says she was fired over her religious objection to using transgender patients’ preferred pronouns or participating in so-called “gender-affirming” healthcare.

Valerie Kloosterman had been working for Michigan Health for 17 years when she sought religious accommodations to policies that would have forced her to affirm ideology on gender that conflicted with her devout faith.

The request was met with hostility and she was blamed for the suicide of transgender people and called “evil” before she was terminated a short time later.

The First Liberty Institute, which is representing Kloosterman, has issued a letter to Michigan Health on her behalf demanding that she be reinstated to her position and that she and others who share her convictions about gender be provided with religious accommodation.

“She believes that God created humankind male and female, that one’s sex is ordained by God, that one should love and care for the body that God gave him or her, and that one should not attempt to erase or alter his or her sex, especially through drugs or surgical means,” the letter reads. “She believes that she must not speak against these truths by using pronouns that contradict a person’s biological sex.”

The letter alleges that when Kloosterman sought a solution to the conflict between her beliefs and hospital policy, a diversity representative angrily told her that “she could not take the Bible or her religious beliefs to work with her.

She was also told that “given her religious beliefs against gender identity-based pronouns and ‘gender reassignment surgery,’ she was to blame for transgender suicides” as well as told she was “evil” and “abusing her power as a health care provider.”

Kloosterman’s attorneys say that their client always provided the same level of care to all her patients and that health care providers must not face firing simply for seeking to adhere to their religious convictions in their practice.

“Valerie provides excellent medical care for every patient, but she cannot in good conscience refer patients for experimental drugs and procedures that violate both her religious convictions and her medical judgment,” said Jordan Pratt, Senior Counsel for First Liberty Institute. “Nor can she use biology-obscuring pronouns that violate her religious beliefs and could cause patients to miss potentially life-saving screenings.”

“It’s bad medicine to force religious health care professionals to choose between their faith and their job,” he also said.  “It is intolerant of Michigan Health to demand that medical professionals like Valerie abandon their religious beliefs and their medical ethics in order to remain employed.”

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