Gay Man Arrested At Hospital After Refusing To Leave Bedridden Partner

gorleyA Missouri man was arrested and served with a restraining order after he refused to leave the bedside of his ailing partner.

Roger Gorley (far right) of Lee’s Summit went to visit his husband, Allen, at Research Medical Center on Tuesday afternoon. When he got there, a member of Allen’s family asked him to leave and when Gorley refused, hospital security forcibly removed him in handcuffs.

“I was not recognized as being the husband, I wasn’t recognized as being the partner,” Gorley told Kansas City’s Fox 4 News.

Though Missouri does not legally recognize them as a couple, according to Gorley, he and Allen have been in a civil union for nearly five years and make medical decisions for each other. Gorley also asserts that the nurse on duty refused to verify that the two men share joint power of attorney.

“She didn’t even bother to go look it up to check into it,” Gorley said. “He’s been at the psychiatric unit part several times.”

Research Medical Center said it does not discriminate based on sexual orientation or race and released the following statement:

We believe involving the family is an important part of the patient care process. And, the patient`s needs are always our first priority. When anyone becomes disruptive to providing the necessary patient care, we involve our security team to help calm the situation and to protect our patients and staff. If the situation continues to escalate, we have no choice but to request police assistance.

Though President Obama extended hospital visitation rights to  same-sex partners in 2010, Roger Gorley cannot visit his husband Allen thanks to the restraining order.

“All we want is equal rights,” he said.

(h/t: The Raw Story)

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  • muscl954

    Doesn’t the legal Power of Attorney this man posessed trump blood-family decision making? If not, what is it good for?

  • viveutvivas

    That statement from the hospital PR department is a non-explanation and a non-apology. Basically they are saying “f**k the domestic partner, it pleases us to give preference to the family instead.”

    @muscl, indeed, doesn’t Power of Attorney trump family? If all it takes is a bigoted hostpital and a bigoted judge to grant the family a restraining order and invalidate the visitation, what good is POA, what good is domestic partnership, and what good is Obama’s order?

  • unclemike

    @muscl954: Not every Power of Attorney includes a Health Proxy. I don’t know, obviously, if theirs did; either way, I’d say this would be a very good case to bring to court.

  • seniceguy64

    This go to AP and CNN NBC ABC and so on it fits in well with all the coverage of marriage rites and why we need

  • Cam

    The problem is, that the hospital can claim he was disruptive. What they don’t add in is that he only became disruptive AFTER they were trying to force him to leave his partner’s bedside.

    This story is the counterpoint to all of those bigots who lie and claim that gays have all the same rights as heterosexuals. Even WITH a will and power of attorney some unknown 3rd cousin can still sue to try to steal their property and if you get a bigoted small town court they will find against the gay partner and it will have to move to a higher court to get resolved.
    Without DOMA that couldn’t happen.

  • LaTeesha

    I’m a little suspicious that there’s more to this story than we are being told.

  • Aidan8

    @muscl954: Yes, ordinarily it will. However we don’t know all the facts. I suspect the family may have made application for the R.O. and who knows what they alleged in an application. (or even if there’s some truth/need for it) Assuming there’s no real reason for the R.O., the hubby needs to get a lawyer to have have the R.O. quickly lifted and put the hospital and family on notice of the P.O.A. and his right to access his husband/partner. Then, leverage the media and threaten bad press. Every LGBT couple should have reciprocal powers of attorney and healthcare proxies -and- make family and providers aware of same.

  • Cam


    Why? Stuff like this happens all the time. Some couple has been together 20 years, one dies, and some relative of theirs that they have never met claims their property etc… and the courts have backed them up on it.

  • viveutvivas

    @Aidan8, sure, if you know enough about how the system works and can afford to hire a better lawyer than the family can, but what if you are not rich and the family is wealthy?

  • Augusto

    Absolutely outrageous behavior!

    The relative should have been pleased this man was loved.

    I’ve gone through similar situations dealing with such asinine hateful people in hospitals.
    When I lay beside my brother, holding him in his hospital bed as he drew his last breaths from HIV, a homophobic head nurse Ratched ordered me off the bed and to “GET OUT!”.

    My brother’s doctor was so enraged by the bigoted woman he put her on immediate administrative leave and allowed me to comfort my brother as he died a very long, slow and horribly painful death.

    There are decent people. It’s nasty hateful people like this man’s family member that can make this world such a hard place at times.

    By the way, nurse Ratched was fired over the incident.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @viveutvivas: I was “blessed” to work at this “marvelous” hospital(sic) as a hospital(sic) Chaplain and indeed found it to be not a very highly rated hospital but very anti-GLBT and bigoted. Unfortunately, until DOMA is completely eradicated from the federal law of the land, this is going to be a problem. I see a great lawsuit coming out of this with the ACLU involved and would love to see the plaintiffs lose a few million dollars over this one.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @Augusto: THIS… is indeed great news!!! I hope she is never hired as a health care worker again, and it would probably be prudent to keep her away from pet stores and all animal hospitals as well. She definitely needs help!

  • Charles175

    @Augusto: I’m sure that she will claim that she was fired because of her religious belief.

    Copy and pasted comment by Mighty_Ponygirl on The Raw Story:

    People need to understand that these incidents are not isolated. We keep waving these things off as freak incidents that are as likely to happen to you or me as winning the lottery would be. They’re not. Fundamentalist religious organizations have made health care part of their ground game: Encouraging unemployed parishoners to go after pharmacists licenses, medical assistant/nurses degrees, and medical billing training specifically so that they can “do God’s work” in the hospitals and pharmacies by denying birth control, proseletyzing to dying patients, and preventing gay people from seeing their partners. Between the “Conscience Clauses” in many states and the shortage of trained professionals, even secular hospitals often turn a blind eye to their behavior.

  • oldladybishop

    I am so very sorry; that’s all I can say. Legal documents are only as good as the people prepared to deal with them. I’m a second wife; my inlaws attempt to treat me like a servant they hired to take care of their brother/father. But I have legal rights; I wish the same could be said for this couple.

  • jackpapa

    @Augusto: Fired? The only apppropriate response in my view.

  • viveutvivas

    @dakotahgeo, a finding that DOMA were unconstitutional would not have helped this couple because they are not married, but have a domestic partnership. Many couples do not even have that. Any proposed solution to this problem that depends on marriage would be half-baked from the start.

    By the way, when using (sic), you are supposed to reproduce the original error, not a corrected version of it. Also, use of “sic” is usually not very nice; it comes across as sarcastic or hostile to your victim, which I don’t think was your intention. It was only a typo anyway, really not worth the trouble ;-)

  • tchuy03

    Before we get our Rainbow pennies all tangled, Maybe the reason why he was in the hospital was cause of his partner? Maybe he was acting erratic and had to be removed for his safety and the safety of others? This article leaves to many doubts and lose ends. We are not always the victims!

  • Mike

    That is the most disgusting example of discrimination I have ever heard of and would never happen in a straight couple relationship… there would be massive protests and riots in the streets if it did. I hope and pray the good citizens of the USA realize how hurtful and wrong this is… and that everyone should be entitled to equal rights regardless of race, gender, OR sexual orientation.

  • Aaron

    Thought it might help to post this additional information from Angela Mansell, sister-in-law to the patient (I copied and pasted from her comments to the Fox News story):

    Angela Mansell

    Allen Mansell is my brother-in-law and Roger Gorley is his husband. I fully support both of them. Lee Mansell, Allen’s younger brother had Allen forcibly admitted to the hospital. Unfortunately, Fox will not allow me to post the link that tells the whole story. Roger raced from work to the hospital which is why he didn’t have all his legal documents. Lee is a bigot and has never liked Roger. Roger refused to leave Allen’s side and told the nurse repeatedly he and Allen shared legal power of attorney and she didn’t want to hear it. Roger and Lee got into a shouting match, provoked by Lee, and Roger demanded the nurse remove Lee because he was upsetting Allen. The nurse didn’t appreciate being yelled at by Roger and called security saying he was being disruptive. Of course she said nothing about Lee because he is “family”. Even though he hadn’t seen Allen since Christmas and could care less about Allen’s health. He just wanted to hurt Roger and separate him and Allen! I hate that I am related to Lee!

  • FStratford

    If I’m the sick gay guy in the hospital and I recover, I would divorce my family.

    This story pretty much puts all those lies out front: that all you need is a POA to care for your sick spouse, that civil union rights is the same as marriage rights. That it doesn’t matter that DOMA exists. That all we have to do is be nuce and wait and there’s no need to fight.

  • 2eo

    In a good update, they appear to have relented.

    I know the actual reason they backed down, but I shall say nothing. Sad to say it’s taken a doosie, it’s 2013, we’re supposed to be past this shit.

  • mcflyer54

    Missouri (and this case) is a perfect example of why marriage equality CANNOT be a states rights issue. Federal law must be in place to ensure that all couples, straight and gay, have equal rights and legal protection regardless of the state in which they reside. This exact same situation could have occurred had the couple been legally married in a state with marriage equality and simply traveling through, or vacationing in, Missouri when one partner required hospitalization.

  • CBoapinta

    I am so sick of marriage equality people claiming that this is proof of why gay marriage is important. That is nonsense. MARRIAGE (GAY OR STRAIGHT) SHOULD HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS. Marriage is not the way that our rights should be determined in the first place. People should not have to be married in order to be cared for by the person they want to care for them. People should be able to decide whoever they want.

  • KT

    If you believe the hospital should be taken to task for this OUTRAGE, please sign these petitions! TY!

    remove all Medicare funding from Research Medical Center in Kansas City, MO. | We the People: Your Voice in Our Government

  • jlands

    And people wonder why we want equal rights. If anyone knows the e-mail address of the Research Medical Center we can collectively let them know our feelings!

  • Dakotahgeo

    @jlands: ….. wait, wait, there’s more:

    Research Medical Center is a 511-bed hospital located in Kansas City, Missouri at 2316 East Meyer Boulevard. It is part of the HCA Midwest Division. Wikipedia

    Phone: (816) 276-4000

    Address: 2316 E Meyer Blvd, Kansas City, MO 64132, United States

    I’m sure you could call them for their e-mail address.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @2eo: You forget that you’re dealing with Kansas and Missouri… two states in the making to replace Barnum & Bailey once that circus has passed on. When you have Republicans/TPods in charge, you can expect ancient history being repeated at a fast rate.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @viveutvivas: Oops! Mea culpa! I gotta read up on that info… thanks!

  • D9W

    Missouri has always been ass backwards when it comes to medicine and legal issues. You could not pay me enough money to go to one of their hospitals.

    I would trust a hospital here in the NW. Even before President Obama signed the extended hospital visitation rights, I was able to visit my husband in the Emergency Room and the local hospital. It took some earth moving and fear of ‘God and damnation’ but even in a navy hospital I was able to visit him. Heck, I even spent the night with him. Though it was a pain in the but being woken up every 45 minutes to get a blood pressure taken. I do have to admit that most of the staff didn’t know how to handle us as a couple (which I think is really the heart of the problem of this issue in this article). At first they gave us a shared room, but when I insisted on cuddling with my man, all of a sudden they were very willing to give us a private room.

    As my roommate back in the Military Academy said about Missouri: They practice medieval medicine there. He also told me he was waiting for them to bring out the leaches when he visited the hospital for a nose bleed.

  • Peter

    Oh mah gawd! I am so outraged! Who the flip do these flippin people think they are! I AM OUTRAGED! The family should hsve let him vist because he is his partner! The nurse should have let him visit because he is his partner! He should NOT have to show any credentials; they should have just taken him on his word!

    “She didn’t even bother to go look it up to check into it,” Gorley said. “He’s been at the psychiatric unit part several times.”

    You see that! He’s been at the psych ward multiple times! How could hospital staff not recognize an ex psych ward patient! And why would they arrest an ex psych ward patient! This is nothing but homophobia, plain and simple!

  • Josh and Cody

    There are several realities here. First off, consider that this is not ONLY a gay thing. Families also battle it out in straight relationships. Remember Terri Schiavo? An extreme comparison perhaps, but not ONLY a gay issue.

    Regarding Power of Attorney. To be fully covered there are several different powers of attorney that must be in place – it sucks but it’s still true at this point. If it’s not specifically a medical power of attorney, include instructions for visitation, etc. it can be tough.

    Thankfully many hospitals “get it” and most that we’ve encountered (my husband has been in Emergency Medicine for a number of years) recognize the situation and handle it appropriately. In this case it sounds like the family pressed the issue – that puts the hospital in a rough patch – gay or straight.

    I hope that Mr. Gorley has sought both legal counsel and also reached out to HRC. The timing of this could not possibly be more perfect to draw lightning-rod attention to the hospital.

    The interesting oversight in the story: It mentions security removing him in cuffs and then mentions a restraining order. But I’m curious…was the restraining order put in place AFTER the incident or had it already been put in place? That’s a critical piece of the puzzle that we’re missing. Regardless, I hope Roger prevails!

  • Dakotahgeo

    @D9W: Kansas is not far behind Missouri but they have the finest hospital in the entire Midwest at KU Medical Center. I’ve visited there as a hospital Chaplain and have been a patient there myself. They have positive GLBT policies in place and they walk the talk! Very refreshing!
    Dakotahgeo, M.Div. Pastor/Chaplain

  • ScaryRussianHeather

    “Gorley said he refused to leave his partner Allen’s bedside”

    Ok first of all, was THIS in a psych ward? How about some FACTS.

    Secondly, “bedridden” Queerty? Nice addition to the original story.

    OUTRAGE! Cut me a break. Seems to me none of you ever HAD anyone in any kind of critical care. You are NOT permitted to choose when you camp out bedside. My ex was in ICU 3 months and from the first moment after his near death on a motorcycle NOBODY was allowed in that room without permission/arrangements from the floor. And we were monitored and had to take turns.

    I was allowed to sleep over for several hours because they wanted ME to change his dirty filthy sheets they didn’t change and his dope doseage was so high he would break out in sweats 20 minutes from the dose. He also was put in a coma for pain because he broke every bone in his upper torso. Had a trache and screaming in pain from hiccoughs on a cracked sternum.

    Lastly, I had 3 NYC Corp, Hells Angels (associates, LOL)stationed OUTSIDE the room to monitor what was going on there when we couldn’t be there 24 hours a day. The hospital had no problem with it as long as they stayed out of their way.

    Get the FACTS before assuming. The stupid story doesn’t even say if it was day one or what. My EX picked up and threw a nurse across the room when they wouldn’t give him enough morphine when I had already told them he was an addict 20 years ago and would have to have specific pain monitoring because of a high threshold. You have NO IDEA if this “bedridden soul” was the same kind of PITA patient like that.

  • FStratford



    If no one was allowed near the patient, why was the brother allowed?

    You are perverted.

  • D9W

    @Dakotahgeo: I have seen more incompetent go on with hospitals back in the mid west then I have ever have witness on the west coast. Half of my family is in medicine from emergency room doctors, pediatricians, to head nurse, CNA’s, and EMTs. Heck I grew up discussing what went on in the ER at the dinner table. And any person who has a large family from the mid-west can give you horror stories about what goes on back there. Being GLBTQ does not make it any better.

  • John Doe


    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Lee’s Summit man claims he was arrested and forced to leave his partner’s hospital room because the hospital refused to recognize the couple’s gay partnership.

    But, the hospital disputes those claims Thursday saying he was asked to leave not because of his sexual orientation, but because of bad behavior.

    Hospital Corporation of America, which is the parent company of Research Medical Center where the incident happened, said the man’s claim is inaccurate.

    Roger Gorley said he just wanted to be there for Allen, his partner of almost five years. When he arrived at the medical center on Tuesday, Allen’s brother confronted him and told him to “back off.”

    Gorley said he had the power of attorney and had every right to be there. However, HCA said Gorley did not present proof of “power of attorney” during that particular visit.

    “‘This is my brother — I will take care of him,’ and I said ‘No, this is my husband I have taken care of him for some time,’” Gorley said.

    Gorley claims a nurse wouldn’t accept him as Allen’s husband and had him escorted out by security. He was later arrested by Kansas City, Mo., police.

    However, HCA said the decision to ask Gorley to leave was because Gorley and Allen’s brother were fighting inside the hospital room.

    When the nurse went in to ask them to please quiet down and please stop this and they continued, and every time they stepped out it would get escalated, so she stepped back in and asked them to remove themselves for the sake of the patient at the moment,” said Rob Dyer of HCA.

    At one point, Dyer said security footage shows a nurse backing out of the room and Gorley was swearing at her, pointing his finger close to her face.

    A request for that video must be made through HCA’s legal department and was not yet available.

    “He [Gorley] and the patient’s brother were fighting in the patient’s room very loudly, very crassly, inappropriate language,” Dyer said.

    While HCA continues to investigate the incident, Dyer said Gorley’s accusations are particularly upsetting given the hospital’s record.

    “We were one of the first to have same sex benefits in the market. We were one of the first to acknowledge same sex partnerships.”

    FOX 4 attempted to get a response from Gorley for comment, but were unable to reach him.

    HCA said Thursday it does not have a restraining order against Gorley and that he is welcome back at anytime. However, a police report shows he has been cited for trespassing and disorderly conduct.

  • John Doe


    Research Medical Center says it can’t talk specifically about this case, but in a statement said:

    We believe involving the family is an important part of the patient care process. And, the patient`s needs are always our first priority. When anyone becomes disruptive to providing the necessary patient care, we involve our security team to help calm the situation and to protect our patients and staff. If the situation continues to escalate, we have no choice but to request police assistance.

    On Thursday, after the story received national attention, Research Medical Center reiterated that their priority is patient care. The following is a statement from Research Medical Center’s Denise Charpentier, VP of Marketing and Public Relations which said in part:

    “Research Medical Center was one of the first hospitals in Kansas City to offer domestic partner benefits, which have been in place since 2005, and we have had a policy specifically acknowledging domestic partners’ visitation rights in place for years.

    This was an issue of disruptive and belligerent behavior by the visitor that affected patient care. The hospital’s response followed the same policies that would apply to any individual engaged in this behavior in a patient care setting and was not in any way related to the patient’s or the visitor’s sexual orientation or marital status.

    This visitor created a barrier for us to care for the patient. Attempts were made to deescalate the situation. Unfortunately, we had no choice but to involve security and the Kansas City MO Police Department.”

  • Dakotahgeo

    @D9W: You have indeed told a truism. The only hospitals I would trust in the KC Metro area are KU Med, North Kansas City Hospital, St. Luke’s Hospital; the rest basically should let the professionals handle healthcare.

  • Charli Girl

    LET ? UMMMM His husband IS in charge of his affairs.
    There should be NO “LETTING” of any family!
    ALL THE “LETTING” should be coming from his husband!!!

    This crap makes me furious!Nothing worse than an ignorant
    bigot!! Much less a whole damn room full!!

  • the other Greg

    @CBoapinta: Yes, but the marriage obsessives mostly aren’t bright enough to think of that.

    He didn’t have the power of attorney paper with him. If they’d had a marriage certificate but he didn’t happen to have it on him, presumably the exact same thing would have happened at this hospital. (Duh!)

  • EGO

    The biggest mistake is that the Medical Research Center should have recognized Roger as his immediate family and asked Alan’s brother to leave and arrest him, not Roger. I have been with my partner for over 51 years and we have been married for almost 9 years. We live in Massachusetts where they practice democracy. Any of our related family members and non-federal businesses must abide by Massachusetts law. If one of us passes away, the other receives all of the assets, and bills of course. When DOMA is repealed as DADT was, we will finally have equal rights which we have earned by paying all of our Federal, State, Social Security, Medicare, and property taxes which more than half is used for the education of children. I am also a Navy Vet and have served my country. It is time to move up to modern times and away from mythical, dark ages thinking i.e. science has determined the world is round and not flat like religion believed. They also found in 1972 that LGBTs do not have mental problems and are part of society.

  • Charli Girl

    Lucky you to live in Ma. I wish i could live there and enjoy
    the freedom…Congats on your 51 years my friend!!!!

  • Aidan8

    I’m a calm rational person and a lawyer. I’d like to think that I wouldn’t become outraged and loud if I were in the same situation… That I would remain calm and level-headed. Yet, if I received a call that my husband was involuntarily taken to a hospital psych unit and, after rushing to the hospital, was met by my husband’s brother trying to keep me away, I’d certainly get loud… especially if there was a history of antagonism. We don’t know all the facts, yet I see this sh*t happen all the time with my LGBT clients — and I’m in the Northeast. Sadly, this stuff happens all the time.

  • 2eo

    @f85: No fucking way. Absolutely no fucking way.

    No way, I’ve worked with her organisation for years on and off. Ah well, I now consider this a slight against people I respect as well as a matter of morality.

    Looks like I’ll be seeing those files released after all. Enjoy your last days working in medicine various bigots.

  • jar

    @the other Greg: Is it your contention that everytime someone is admitted to the hospital, their spouse is required to bring their marriage license to be treated as family? You do know how moronic that sounds, right?

  • jar

    The significance of the repeal of DOMA to cases like this is that once DOMA is ruled unconstitutional, marriages from one state must be recognized in another state under the full faith and credit clause of the constitution. Under that clause, each state must recognize and give full force to the actions of other states. The most obvious example of this is the driver’s license. Although each state issues its own licenses, it must recognize the validity of licenses issued in other states. A full faith and credit challenge will be the next legal battle for same sex marriage. Once the court rules that it applies to same sex marriages, we will have de facto gay marriage nationwide. This is not to say, however, that obstacles like this incident will go away immediately, but we will have the full force of the law behind us.

  • hyhybt

    OK… a few minutes ago, up at the top of the page where the “Douche of the Week” article is now, there was something about an update on this. When I reloaded the page, it was gone, and there doesn’t appear to be any such article on the site. What happened?

  • the other Greg

    @jar: No, typical marriage-obsessive moron, that’s not my contention, but merely
    that (a) a homophobic official might be just as homophobic about the marriage certificate as they are about the power of attorney, health care proxy, etc.: they are ALL legally-binding documents, and (b) even a well-run hospital (which this one was NOT) might have suspicions about someone excitably claiming to be so-and-so without any proof and wanting to spend the night with a patient unattended.

  • hyhybt

    @the other Greg: Theoretically, perhaps. In practice, you might notice that people don’t carry around proof that they’re married. They don’t need to; saying “he’s my husband” is good enough in circumstances like this.

  • the other Greg

    @hyhybt: This was a psychiatric ward; things are a little different there. But even if they’d been married, obviously this hospital (this nurse at least) would have been homophobic enough to ignore that too.

  • Daggerman

    ..if it had been me I would of killed someone, literally. How dare these ignorant twits treat Gay people like this—when are we going to be taken seriously and recognized as decent human beings?

  • Dakotahgeo

    @Daggerman: Although I abhor violence, we may not see a positive change in GLBT support until vast numbers of the opposition are lost through violence. On the other hand, the right wing protesters and law enforcement negativity have done more to swing people around to support the GLBT community than any other force, except our own. We may be doing just fine with the support of the conservative twits among us.

  • hyhybt

    @Dakotahgeo: Aside from the other problems with violence, speaking strictly as a practical matter, it wouldn’t work. The number of actual LGBT people is far too small without allies (and even that’s on the highly improbable assumption that all gayetc people would join in) and turning violent would lose more allies than it would gain.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @hyhybt: Mmmmmmm… good point, good point, I’ll have to reconsider that. However, I still think the conservatives have forgotten the ‘Dark Horse’ phenomena… the more you force down the underdog, the more support he receives from the right-winged out twits. This whole episode is NOT going to help the hospital’s creds or reputation, now or in the future, thank God!

  • Dakotahgeo

    @Dakotahgeo: Correction: Should say, “… the right-winged out twits’ comments/actions.”

Comments are closed.