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Monday, July 15, 2024 | Back issues
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Teachers Union Sues District Over| ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ Orders for Students

DETROIT (CN) - A teachers' union sued the Northville Public Schools for approving "Do Not Resuscitate" orders for at least three students, submitted by parents, without informing the union. The union says the lack of information could subject its members to liability.

According to this somewhat bizarre complaint in Wayne County Court, the Northville Board of Education approved administrator's request "to approve Do Not Resuscitate Requests (DNR) submitted 'by parents or guardians asking the school not to provide specific potentially life-saving medical intervention for their child.'"

The complaint adds: "(T)he decision to grant a parent's or guardian's DNR request is made exclusively by School District administrators and supervisors, based on medical and other information provided to them by parents, guardians and health care professionals. Defendant has refused to share such information with Plaintiff Association and shares such information on a selective basis with teachers, nurses and other educational professionals who may be required to honor DNR directives by refraining from administering potentially life-saving medical interventions to specific students."

The Northville Education Association says the district has issued such directives "for at least three DNR identified students" and that "(m)any of those directives have been non-specific as to the procedures to be followed and as to the protocol to be flowed with other students who may be present during a medical emergency.

"Defendant has refused to reduce to writing the DNR directives verbally issued to affected teachers, nurses and other educational professionals, even though they face serious discipline for failing to honor the directives."

The union seeks an injunction and declaratory judgment on the school district's right to issue DNR directives, its right to discipline employees for refusing to implement them, employees' rights to refuse to honor DNR directives, and costs. It is represented by Harvey Wax with Zausman, Kaufman & August of Farmington Hills.

Northville Schools, centered in the city of Northville, draws students from Oakland, Wayne and Washtenaw Counties.

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