A male doctor is suing the Victorian health department claiming he is the victim of sex discrimination and sexual harassment.
Doctor Michael Woodburn told The Herald-Sun: “this case is going to be extremely unpopular, but I think it needs to be heard”.
Male doctor sues health department
Dr Woodburn has filed his sex discrimination claim against Austin Health in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).
He says “over a period of months and years” a number of staff members discriminated against him because he is a man.
Dr Woodburn also claimed a nurse sexually harassed him in 2021 when she “massaged his neck and shoulders without his consent.”
He claims Austin Health staff later victimised him and treated him “unfavourably” for making formal complaints.
Further alleged assaults
In another complaint, Dr Woodburn claimed a female registrar “slapped him hard on the back of the neck”.
He alleged further “physical assaults” at the hands of the same registrar.
He accused her of jabbing at him with her finger to get his attention, scratching him, grabbing his forearm and dragging him out of a room.
Dr Woodburn claims the registrar did this “to control and subordinate him, and to punish him for his perceived lack of interest in her”.
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Sexist against men
In an email to The Herald-Sun, Dr Woodburn claimed Austin Health had a reputation as “a workplace sexist against men”.
He added “many male staff members seemed to disappear suddenly”.
“Male staff members who have been discriminated against don’t disclose it, because they will be retaliated against,” he said.
“The violence and false allegations that I was subjected to as a junior doctor at Austin Health were horrific, and the effects on my life and career have been devastating. No doctor should ever be treated this way, nor should any employee in Australia.”
Austin Health refused to comment on the allegations.
The parties will soon attend a compulsory conciliation conference in an attempt to resolve the matter.
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