Protesters demand Melania Trump CANCEL Boston hospital visit to highlight drug-exposed infants saying she ‘promotes the hatred of immigrants’
- Protesters plan to greet Melania Trump on her visit to Boston Medical Center
- They argue her trip hurts their patients, many of whom are immigrants
- The first lady is there to learn about a cuddling program designed to treat babies born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, part of her Be Best campaign
- Some 250 people who work at the hospital plan to protest her arrival
- BMC is the largest safety-net hospital in New England
- It’s unusual for a first lady to be greeted with protesters
Protesters plan to greet Melania Trump Wednesday during her visit to a Boston hospital to highlight the care of drug-exposed infants, citing concerns about how the first lady’s stop will appear to their immigrant patients.
Melania Trump will visit the Boston Medical Center to learn about a cuddling program designed to treat babies born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS), as part of her Be Best campaign.
The first lady often visits hospitals as part of her initiative.
But the appearance of protesters is unusual in that most first ladies are not faced with the kind of political demonstrations that follow presidents.
Protesters plan to greet Melania Trump on her visit to Boston Medical Center
She is visiting the hospital to learn about a cuddling program designed to treat babies born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, part of her Be Best campaign
Some hospital staff asked the first lady’s visit be cancelled
Some 250 people who work at the hospital plan to protest Melania Trump’s arrival, the Boston Globe reports, after about 75 staff members met with the hospital chief executive to ask her to cancel the first lady’s visit.
Protesters said they are worried about the message Melania Trump’s appearance sends to patients – especially those who are immigrants.
‘If they thought that my affiliation was with somebody who promotes such division and promotes the hatred of immigrants, I’m sure that they’re not going to be asking to come to see me to take care of them,’ said Cecilia Girard, a nurse midwife who is an immigrant from Ecuador, to the Globe.
BMC treats a large number of low-income patients on Medicaid and many immigrants. It is the largest safety-net hospital in New England, meaning it must treat patients regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay.
But hospital chief executive Kate Walsh told the 6,000 staff members in an email that the first lady’s visit is a ‘unique opportunity to share our values of respect and inclusion with federal leaders whose policies have a significant impact on the vulnerable populations we are dedicated to serving.’
‘Two-thirds of our patients have some form of government insurance, and our health plan is the largest participant in the state’s Medicaid accountable care organization, so the opportunity to highlight the innovative work we are doing is critical to ensuring that we are able to continue to deliver on our mission well into the future,’ she wrote.
The first lady will learn about the hospital’s Cuddling Assists in Lowering Maternal and Infant Stress (CALM) Program developed to treat babies born with NAS, the East Wing announced earlier this week.
She will also receive a briefing on the programs and tour the BMC’s pediatric unit to see the treatment in action.
The first lady typically keeps herself out of politics and her husband’s policies, focusing on the three pillars of her Be Best campaign: well-being, online safety, and opioid abuse.
It’s rare for a first lady to be greeted with protesters as employees at Boston Medical Center plan to greet Melania Trump
After Melania Trump wore her ‘I really don’t care do u?’ coat, protesters at immigration rallies wore ‘we care’ jackets and t-shirts
Melania Trump also faced protests in Malawi during her Africa trip last year
Protesters object to President Trump calling Malawi and other nations ‘s***holes’
One of her rare political missteps came when she wore a jacket that read ‘I don’t care, do u?’ as she left Joint Base Andrews to visit facilities on the U.S. border that held children separated from their parents under a then-Trump administration policy.
In the wake, protesters at immigration rallies last summer wore ‘we care’ coats and t-shirts.
The first lady objected to her husband’s policy on separating children from their families, one of the rare public statements her office made about a presidential issue. The policy was later rescinded.
Melania Trump also was met with protesters during part of her visit to Malawi when she went to Africa last fall. Protesters held up ‘Welcome to Malawi. #NOTAS***HOLE!’ signs in reference to President Trump’s calling some countries ‘s***holes.’