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Did Race, Ethnicity & "Not looking the type" help conceal intent & true colours of a Killer Nurse?

Updated: Aug 26, 2023


First and foremost, we at Equality 4 Black Nurses (E4BN) offer our sincerest condolences to those affected by the case of Lucy Letby. The parents had their babies killed by a murderous nurse whom they were supposed to trust and those whose children came to harm with unknown life-long effects. We also extend our condolences to those parents who are now concerned their child may have been abused. We hope the public inquiry will uncover the full extent as we believe there might be more.


E4BN has been following this case closely since it first caught the public's attention in 2020, and we have watched how things have unfolded. What we have witnessed throughout has shocked us to the core and makes us wonder, did Race, Ethnicity and "Not looking the type" help conceal intent & the true colour of a Killer Nurse?


The British systems, processes, and rules that enabled Lucy Letby to kill and essentially get away with murder undetected for so long are the same processes used to execute and disproportionately target and profile Black nurses' lives daily.


At E4BN, our work involves working with external organisation's in highlighting the insidious nature of systemic racism within healthcare and demonstrating the apparent differences in treatment dished out to (often innocent) Black Nurses.


This case of a white Killer Nurse being exposed for her wrongdoing and going undetected over a long period of time is no surprise to our members at E4BN. Killer Nurse Letby is not the first killer nurse, and to jog memories, here are some others:



Beverley Allitt, a white nurse, was convicted of killing four children and attempting to murder three others while working as a paediatric nurse. Killer Nurse Allitt used her position as a nurse to carry out harmful acts against child patients under her care.



Colin Campbell Norris, a white nurse, was convicted of being a serial killer after murdering four elderly patients. Killer Nurse Campbell administered lethal insulin doses to his victims, causing them to fall into hypoglycaemic comas. He targeted vulnerable elderly patients, taking advantage of their weakened conditions.


Benjamin Geen, a white nurse, was convicted of being a serial killer after deliberately causing harm to patients. Killer Nurse Geen targeted patients not in critical a condition and administered drugs that caused their conditions to deteriorate, prompting medical emergencies.


Race is the glaring commonality in all of these cases. Each Nurse was in a position of power and trust and yet deceived the people who trusted them the most. We ask the question: Could their race and "not looking the type" have helped them to disguise their atrocities?


At the first sniff of a problem, Black Nurses are often presumed guilty without sufficient evidence often based on a hunch and heavily supported by the senior management team. Nurses of colour are often disbelieved when defending themselves (repeatedly) over the most minor infractions and often prosecuted in a way reminiscent of a kangaroo-style court/disciplinary process without sufficient evidence.


Nurses of colour are constantly on their guard as the powers of governing authorities appear alert to minor offences and are quick to use some of their outdated, excessive rules, regulations, and processes to victimise and oppress Nurses of colour.


Not long ago, the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) highlighted from their statistics that Black Nurses are more likely to be put through every terrifying and demoralising stage of their fitness to practise process before vexatious referrals are identified and ultimately thrown out. This data was obtained and published by the NMC, so we are not making this up. The NMC subsequently revealed that white Nurses are more likely to be referred to the fitness to practice team by concerned members of the public and not by colleagues as in the case of killer Nurse Letby.


Killer Letby's employers had a duty of care to protect their patients and the wider public by referring her to the NMC much earlier. They ought to have taken the concerns of the staff seriously, suspended her pending an investigation and then headed straight to the NMC helpline for guidance. However, E4BN has identified a common theme with our cases: Black Nurses involved in suspected wrong doing in their place of work tend to be managed differently, and preventative measures are put in place swiftly and often disproportionately when measured against the risk and the concerns raised in all the circumstances.

Black Nurse of E4BN are often suspended from work and temporarily suspended from the NMC register based on hypothetical risk or suspicion only.


Killer Letby's colleagues had much more than suspicion, as they had researched evidence-based journal articles. They examined the ward rota, x-rays and blood results.

These colleagues included consultants and senior staff with years of expertise and experience. They even went as far as to seek external advice and reached out to the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.


Desperate staff trying to protect the babies and the wider public escalated their concerns, but those in power, the hospital board of directors ignored them. They were the authorities with a duty to act and to do the right thing.


Instead of suspending Killer Nurse Letby and acting to protect those babies and the wider public, management worked towards creating a better paid and more desirable role of Advanced Nurse practitioner (ANP) for killer Letby.


Killer Letby's white fragility and perceived innocence allowed her to continue benefiting from the Health Service System whilst harming and killing lots of helpless premature babies.

We struggle to understand why the NMC did not invite Killer Letby to an NMC interim order hearing as soon as she was arrested in July 2018 as in the case of 98% of our Black Nurses after coming into criminal contact with the police or being arrested. Nursing is a notifiable profession, meaning if a nurse or healthcare professional is involved in certain events or circumstances, the employer and the police must notify the NMC.


These notifications are mandatory and intended to ensure public safety, uphold professional standards, and maintain transparency within the profession. Notifiable events include being arrested or involved in serious incidents, misconduct, breaches of ethics, or other issues that might impact the safety and well-being of the public.


We currently have a Black Nurse we represent who, although never having had any police involvement or ever being arrested, has been barred by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) after her manager reported her to the DBS for not collecting a prescription of antibiotics from a pharmacy. There is no evidence of her harming any patient. However, The NMC has subsequently suspended her from their register, claiming the suspension resulted from the DBS decision. The case is now listed for appeal at the Upper Tribunal as she is locked in a catch-22 situation, which will likely take years to resolve.


We also have a Black Nurse who was reported and investigated by the NMC after the police notified them when she was wrongly arrested for not getting out of her car quickly enough. No patient was harmed or involved during an aggressive police stop after being wrongly profiled and targeted.


These two examples are just the tip of the iceberg, and both demonstrate that there are efficient processes in place to protect the public; however, from our work at E4BN, it seems that a draconian approach and the full force of the law are disproportionately reserved for Black Nurses as has been made crystal clear.


We recently published a blog called "skin colour has a lot to do with it" highlighting the glaring differences in how black Nurses have been treated compared to white nurses, which shows how racism is failing our healthcare service. We urge you to read the previous blog post. However, in the case of Killer Letby, we are convinced that her race was the factor that allowed her to remain undetected for so long and enabled her to receive more favourable treatment.

If any of the issues discussed here resonate with you or you are affected by our content, please Matron@equality4blacknurses.com

Black nurses are suffering mentally and physically from racial trauma, and nobody is listening. Equality 4 Black Nurses is challenging this racism. We demand justice, we demand change and we will not be silenced. If you need our help in any way, please get in touch with us via our website or our social media accounts or phone 0208 050 2598 and we will support you.



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22 comentários

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Convidado:
16 de mai.

I'm a 78 year old man paralysed under the waist after a stroke. At the aged care, I was drugged and booti-raiped by a blak tranisensual nurse in 2019... no one believes me, because after raiping me, 'she' used a condom, and also cleaned my booti-hole of the evidence. The first time it happened, I felt drowsy and disorientated after the medication she gave me. Then I woke up face down, and heard grunts, I turned my head around to see 'her' pumping me... she stuck a needle in my neck, and I passed out.

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Convidado:
16 de mai.
Respondendo a

I forgot to add that the same nurse also moonlights as a prostitute at a local brothel using the name '9inchmomma', and the aged-care management know it, and it does not concern them. 'She' even told me that I'm lucky that she humped my old turkey butt, and that there are men who would pay for it. I'm very sure that I am not the only raip victim at that aged care. The only good part is that I can't feel anything below my waist.

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Convidado:
08 de nov. de 2023
Avaliado com 5 de 5 estrelas.

agree with every word. good article

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Convidado:
08 de set. de 2023
Avaliado com 5 de 5 estrelas.

Hey is it surprising that the UK ethnic minority population is less 5% of the entire population and yet constitutes more than 80% of all those in prison? I like America, France and Australia because they don't try to conceal that they are racist. Here we try to hide it but it's not possible.

I will you an email about my own personal experience in the NHS

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Convidado:
27 de ago. de 2023
Avaliado com 1 de 5 estrelas.

Disturbing, racist article.

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Convidado:
09 de set. de 2023
Respondendo a

The truth.Facts only .If she was a black nurse, she would have been sacked earlier and referred to the NMC .

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Convidado:
26 de ago. de 2023
Avaliado com 5 de 5 estrelas.

Informative and interesting points

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