By Steve Moran
The entire nation is sickened and horrified at the murder of Tyre Nichols by five Memphis police officers. It is simply beyond comprehension that five officers who have sworn to protect and serve the people of that city would blatantly and aggressively do the opposite. It is hard to imagine any punishment severe enough to feel like justice will be truly served.
A Remarkable Thing
Patrick Yoes, the national president of the Fraternal Order of Police spoke out condemning the assault:
“According to reports, the fact that none of those officers — NONE of them — acted to stop this vicious attack, only compounds my horror — it is sickening,” Yoes said. “The men arrested and charged for this crime have rights, the presumption of innocence, and the due process protections of anyone accused of a crime. But the bottom line here is that Tyre Nichols, his family, and our entire country need to see justice done — swiftly and surely.
It was a remarkable, courageous thing to do, when mostly organizations like this stand silently by when members do wrong things. It got me to once again wonder how much better off our industry would be if our trade associations did the same thing when we see senior living communities, leaders, organizations hurt residents and team members.
I am not talking about those “there but for the grace of God” events that can happen in any senior living organization because people are human. I am talking about those instances where …
- No one was evacuated in the face of a hurricane or flood.
- There were massive COVID deaths because the leadership refused to impose the most basic protective measures.
- There are repeated patterns of poor care in an organization.
It would have been easy for Yoes to remain silent. After all, his job, his organization’s job, is to protect police officers’ rights and to make the police look good. He could have argued that there were lots of other people already calling for accountability and that for him to say anything would just be piling on.
Instead he did the right thing. He should have been ashamed and embarrassed, because in that moment these five officers tarnished every single police officer in the nation, perhaps even the world. They sent the message that the police could not be protected.
Every single time these horrific things happened because of leadership failures, those leaders made every single senior living community, every single senior living leader, look bad. They made senior living look a little less safe for older people, for team members, for family members.
It should be seen as an assault on each of us. We would be more trusted, better served, if we stood up and shouted out
THAT IS NOT US!!
Silence is not good enough, NOT NEARLY GOOD ENOUGH.