A nurse with 15 years’ experience has been sacked after discussing Christianity and offering to pray with patients before operations. Sister Sarah Kuteh was dismissed for breaching guidelines, even though her job involved asking people preparing for surgery about their religion.
The mother-of-three, who is now suing the hospital for unfair dismissal, said she was offering solace to patients she believed were happy to chat about their beliefs, and described her sacking as ‘disproportionate and punitive’.
The row comes after Theresa May told MPs that Christians should feel able to speak about their faith at work. The Prime Minister’s comments followed criticism by Government watchdog the Equality and Human Rights Commission, highlighted by The Mail on Sunday, of politically correct organisations that curb freedom of expression.
Mrs Kuteh broke down in tears as she recalled being suspended and escorted from Darent Valley hospital in Dartford, Kent.
She said: ‘It was embarrassing for me – and painful after all I had done in my years as a nurse. I was told I couldn’t even speak to my colleagues. All I had done was to nurse from my heart. How could it be harmful to tell someone about Jesus?’
But bosses at Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust said her ‘unwanted discussions’ had upset patients and she had also failed to heed warnings that she was being unprofessional.