Fresno VA Hospital Blocks Fox News Channel From Waiting Room Television
By Erik Rosales
FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) — Veterans are outraged after a KMPH FOX 26 News investigation reveals the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Fresno was caught blocking the "Fox News Channel" from a hospital waiting room. Is it a mistake or something more? Veteran Bob McLaughlin says, "It was just beyond amazement because I know Fox News has been pretty heavy on any of the government things coming out, especially the Veteran Affairs Hospital scandal." McLaughlin says he went to the hospital to check it out for himself. McLaughlin says, "An employee came by and I said can you do me a favor. I said there is a story coming up on Fox News I'd like to hear, can you please switch it over to Fox News. He said sure. He went over and said I believe that's 17. Three times it just jumped over 17 and he said I guess we don't have it anymore. He said I don't know what's going on." Because the VA Hospital in Fresno and other VA Hospitals and clinic across the country operate with the help of your tax dollars, no matter what side of the fence you're on it brings into question Freedom of Speech and censorship. VA Hospital Chief of Public Affairs Director Sheryl Grubb says. "Thanks to you, yes we found out that Fox News was blocked out from one of waiting areas. It was just a misunderstanding. We've had a lot of veterans with diverse personalities. A lot of veterans complaining about one news station or the other, so the intent was really to be fair and equitable and take all stations off." Reporter Erik Rosales says, "At the same time with you guys receiving tax dollars, this VA hospital cannot censor things like that?" Grubb says, "That's right. You are very right. Obviously that was our mistake." Grubb says by no means was the national news station blocked because of the recent VA health care system audit. Reporter Erik Rosales asks, "What then was the reason of you blocked it in the first place?" Grubb says, "We've had several incidents of veterans actually arguing, fighting over the different news stations. Some wanted to watch news, some did not. Others wanted to watch specific stations." Grubb says Fox News will be unblocked immediately and a check will be made to make sure it's not blocked from other television waiting rooms.
KMPH Fox 26 is the Central Valley's news leader, covering Fresno, California and the surrounding area, including Clovis, Madera, Hanford, Visalia, Biola, Kerman, Tranquillity, San Joaquin, Reedley, Coalinga, Avenal, Lemoore, Tulare, Selma, Caruthers, Tollhouse, Three Rivers, Porterville, and Merced.