florida trump cutout dialysis

Nelson Gibson with his emotional support item
A Florida man undergoing kidney dialysis three times a week is upset that he is not allowed to bring a life-sized cardboard cutout of Donald Trump to sessions, for emotional support.

Nelson Gibson told a local television station, WPBF, his family cannot sit with him during his three-and-a-half-hour treatments. In their absence, he began bringing a picture of Trump as a comfort item.

"It just feels like bringing something from home to make you comfortable," Gibson told the West Palm Beach area TV outlet.

Gibson said no one complained.

Next, he started bringing a small cardboard cutout of himself standing next to a photo of Trump.

No one complained, he said, adding that some people even took photos with it.

Last Saturday, Gibson took a life-sized cutout of Trump to his treatment at Fresenius Kidney Care in Port St Lucie.

Again, he said, no one took issue.

But when he returned on Tuesday for treatment with the presidential cutout, he said, he ran into a roadblock.

"They told me it was too much and it wasn't a rally," he told the TV station.

Gibson's son contacted officials at the facility to find out what the problem was.

"It was supposed to be an issue of safety infectious disease, which made no sense," Eric Gibson said.

The Gibson family say they feel singled out since the center typically encourages patients to bring emotional support items.

Gibson said another patient brings in bubble wrap and pops it during her treatment, which he finds irritating.

Eric Gibson said: "What I would really like to happen is for them not to infringe upon my father's freedom of expression and speech and allow him to bring in the life-size cardboard cutout that takes up less service area than a garbage can."

In a statement, Fresenius Kidney Care spokesman Brad Puffer said: "While we cannot discuss any specific individual, we strongly support the ability of all our patients to express their views, which includes bringing reasonably sized items into our dialysis centers that do not create safety or infection control issues, or interfere with caregivers on the treatment floor."

The family said they were not sure when Gibson would return for treatment.