Skip To Content
Get Our Newsletter
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

Former Ramaz Nurse Can Sue Under Whistleblower Law

A former school nurse at the Ramaz School in New York who says she was fired for reporting a possible case of child abuse can sue the school under the state’s whistleblower law.

The New York State Court of Appeals court ruled April 12 in a 3-2 vote that Joyce Villarin can sue the school for retaliatory termination, upholding a 2010 decision from Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Milton Tingling.

In 2007, a student at the school on Manhattan’s Upper East Side came to Villarin with a “prominent injury” on his cheek that he told her was inflicted by his father. The father admitted to Villarin that he had hit his son and did not express remorse, according to the lawsuit.

Ramaz encouraged Villarin, who had been working at the school for a year when the incident occurred, not to report the incident to authorities. She was fired in April 2008 after reporting the incident because the school said she was “not a team player.”

Villarin sued the school in Manhattan Supreme Court in 2009, arguing that the state’s Social Services Law obligated her to report the potential abuse. Under the law, school officials must report to state authorities a reasonable suspicion that a child is being abused or mistreated.

The majority of judges agreed with Villarin, saying that her claim “falls within both the letter and the spirit of the private-employee whistleblower statute.” The judges said if she had not reported the potential abuse she would have been subject to “civil liability for failing to report it.

Dive In

    Engage

    • SHARE YOUR FEEDBACK

    • UPCOMING EVENT

      50th meeting of the Yiddish Open Mic Cafe

      Hybrid event in London and online.

      Aug 14, 2022

      1:30 pm ET · 

      Join audiences and participants from across the globe for this live celebration of Yiddish songs, poems, jokes, stories, games, serious and funny - all performed in Yiddish with English translation.

    Republish This Story

    Please read before republishing

    We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free under an Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives Creative Commons license as long as you follow our republishing guidelines, which require that you credit the Foward and retain our pixel. See our full guidelines for more information.

    To republish, copy the HTML, which includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline, images, and credit to the Foward. Have questions? Please email us at editorial@forward.com.

    We don't support Internet Explorer

    Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.