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NYU Nurse Is Fired After Calling the Gaza War a ‘Genocide’ in Speech

Earlier this month, NYU Langone Health bestowed an award on a labor and delivery nurse for providing compassionate care to mothers who had lost babies. But shortly after, the nurse said, the hospital fired her over the speech she gave when she accepted the award.

In it, she spoke of the suffering of Palestinian women amid the Israel-Hamas war, which she called a “genocide.” The nurse, Hesen Jabr, is not the first medical worker to be fired at NYU Langone, a major New York hospital system, over commentary about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The hospital is currently embroiled in a lawsuit by a prominent cancer researcher, who was fired from his job as the director of its cancer center after he posted a variety of anti-Hamas political cartoons. Some included offensive caricatures of Arab people.

A young doctor-trainee was also “removed from service” at an NYU Langone hospital on Long Island, according to the hospital, after being accused of posting a message on Instagram defending the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel — though he was later quietly reinstated.

In her speech, according to a video she posted on social media, Ms. Jabr drew a connection between her work with grieving mothers in New York and the war in Gaza.

“It pains me to see the women from my country going through unimaginable losses themselves during the current genocide in Gaza,” said Ms. Jabr, who is Palestinian-American. “This award is deeply personal to me for those reasons.”

She added, “Even though I can’t hold their hands and comfort them as they grieve their unborn children and the children they have lost during this genocide, I hope to keep making them proud as I keep representing them here at NYU.”

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