According to KCTV, Shelbi Elliott-Heenan posted the photo of her and another man dressed as “JAY-Z,” who is also in blackface. Of course, the picture immediately garnered backlash. Someone who saw the photo contacted her employer, St. Luke’s Hospital, who noted that they are a place that tries to promote “culture of diversity and inclusion.”
“While it is against Saint Luke’s policy to comment on specific personnel matters, we can confirm that this individual is no longer a Saint Luke’s employee,” a statement from the hospital read. “Saint Luke’s is deeply committed to our culture of diversity and inclusion. It is fundamental to who we are as an organization and we vigorously protect it on behalf of all our patients and employees and expect those who represent us to do the same.”
“We need to do better at teaching history and we also need to be more integrated,” said Dr. Makini King of the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s Diversity and Inclusion Division regarding how we teach others about the racial implications and history of blackface.
“We need to encourage relationships with people who are not like us and that’s a very deliberate thing, It has to be done,” she continued. “It doesn’t just happen because you know you’re a good person … people have to deliberately form relationships with other people so that they have better information about other people’s cultures what’s appropriate and what’s not and then also they get to humanize other people.”