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Social worker sues former employer after being fired for reporting bigotry

A cancer counselor who experienced ethnic slurs from colleagues was told: “It is the essence of white fragility to claim victimhood when you are definitely not the victim.”

The Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, a nonprofit cancer treatment center, existing as an alliance between the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, University of Washington Medicine and Seattle Children's Hospital. Credit: Ciar via Wikimedia Commons.
The Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, a nonprofit cancer treatment center, existing as an alliance between the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, University of Washington Medicine and Seattle Children's Hospital. Credit: Ciar via Wikimedia Commons.

When Tammy Weitzman’s co-workers referred to her with an antisemitic slur and started harassing her for knowing a member of the Trump administration, she experienced no protection from the nonprofit Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, now the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center. Instead came retaliation: she was fired. 

Now she has filed a lawsuit, charging racial and political discrimination, with the support of the Coalition for Liberty.  

On Tuesday, Weitzman told The Daily Signal that after she reported the bigotry and unprofessional behavior, she was required to attend a diversity workshop but not those who insulted her.

When Weitzman objected to instructions from Nidhi Berry, who led a “Race and Allyship” seminar at the center, to lecture patients about former President Donald Trump, she received an email expressing shock that “you, a white woman and fellow social worker, would choose to burden me, a woman of color, with your feelings and triggers.”

Berry further wrote that “it is the essence of white privilege to be able to focus on a tree at the expense of seeing the forest,” and “it is the essence of white fragility to claim victimhood when you are definitely not the victim.”

She added being disturbed that a white woman at a facility such as the cancer center “would try to play these games, would claim the status of victimhood, in the face of a woman of color, after the years of the era of Trump.”

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