“I asked a lady to remove her face veil for adequate communication in the same way I’d ask a motorcyclist to remove a crash helmet,” the physician said.
By World Israel News Staff
“Dr. Keith Wolverson, 52, who has been practicing for 23 years has been suspended and is facing the prospect of losing his position due to asking a Muslim mother to remove her Niqab,” says a petition posted on change.org.
“The woman attended surgery at the Royal Stock University Hospital [in the English county of Staffordshire] with her child,” the petition continues.
“Dr. Wolverson asked if the woman would remove her Niqab as he was having difficulty hearing her through the material. He explained that to provide the best and safest treatment for the woman’s young daughter, he needed a clear understanding of her condition.”
The woman and her husband have made an official complaint to the GMC [General Medical Council] and now Dr. Wolverson faces being fired for discrimination,” says the post on the online petitioning site.
Wolverson says that he is“rather fearful of the consequences” after he was reported to the GMC, according to the Daily Mail.
“I asked a lady to remove her face veil for adequate communication in the same way I’d ask a motorcyclist to remove a crash helmet,” the physician said in a statement quoted in British media.
According to Wolverson, the woman initially “willingly agreed to the request,” but when her husband arrived about 30 minutes later, she complained to Wolverson’s superiors about the incident, reports the Birmingham News.
“I’ve treated women in the past who have worn similar veils, but on those occasions, I’ve never had to ask them to remove it; they just did,” he told the Daily Mail.
The official complaint claims the mother was left crying and feeling “victimized and racially discriminated” against. It says that the doctor was “rude” and “gave her a dirty look,” says the Mail.
A spokesman for The Doctors’ Association UK said: “It is of utmost importance that the religious wishes of our patients are respected,” according to the Mail. “However, evidently there are some circumstances where removal of a niqab or burka is necessary for medical assessment and treatment. The GMC should consider issuing clear guidelines to protect both doctors and our patients,” said the spokesman, as quoted by the newspaper.
As of this writing, 110,154 people have signed the petition, according to change.org.