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Children's Mercy Hospital apologizes after email critical of police

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Posted at 4:49 PM, Jun 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-05 20:10:53-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Officials at Children’s Mercy Hospital have apologized for the content of a letter sent by administrators to hospital staff last weekend, which contained information critical of police.

The letter drew the ire of the Kansas City Fraternal Order of Police, who tweeted portions of the letter on Friday

A hospital spokesperson said the letter, which was sent by Chief Executive Officer Paul Kempinski and Chief Diversity Officer Marshaun Butler, was meant to start a dialogue among staff around racism in an e-mailed response to 41 Action News Friday afternoon,

The spokesman said in an effort to quickly start that conversation, some of the links in the letter “were not properly vetted” and “had they been, we wouldn’t have included them.”

“We deeply regret the error," Children's Mercy said in a statement. "Even as too many in the Black community have experienced tragic injustice, we would never support indictment of an entire profession. Children’s Mercy honors, supports and respects police officers who serve admirably under intensely stressful conditions, and with great courage."

KC FOP President Brad Lemon told 41 Action News Children's Mercy's apology was not an apology at all, just admittance to an administrative oversight.

"I've always had just a huge amount of respect for them, and a number of our members' kids are alive today because of that place," Lemon said. "This is not a knock on that organization. I would never do that. I would never blame people who work at a certain location or in a certain profession for one person's mistake, unlike what the CEO did to us."

Lemon also rankled at the idea that Children's Mercy didn't bother to address the issue at all until the letter was reported in the media.

He later added, “To call out law enforcement across the country for a very small number of people that do really dumb things makes no sense. Our members serve this this city admirably they've there's a statue with a hundreds of names on it, that who have died in the line of duty saving people here."