Did white privilege allow Lucy Letby's crimes to go unnoticed?

Activist Linda Belos says she isn't convinced Lucy Letby would have got away with her crimes for so long if she was working class.

This comes amid speculation the neonatal nurse was able to slip beneath the net because she was white and middle class.

Letby was sentenced to a whole life tariff on Monday after she was found guilty of the murders of 7 infants at the Countess of Chester Hospital between 2015 and 2016.

In a tweet released yesterday, the President of the Royal College of Nurses (RCN) Sheila Sobrany told followers that “Lucy Letby would have been stopped sooner if she wasn’t white”.

Speaking to TalkTV’s Rosanna Lockwood, Ms Kleeman rebuffed the argument that white privilege had anything to do with Letby escaping detection.

Ms Kleeman stated: “The idea that she was allowed to get away with this because of race is a red herring.

“We know she was allowed to get away with it because the hospital failed to take the necessary action to protect those babies.”

An independent inquiry has begun in earnest to discover how Letby was able to continue working with children despite a range of complaints from colleagues.

Responding to Ms Sobrany’s controversial tweet, Kleeman reminded Rosanna that many of the consultants that reported Letby were white.

Ms Kleeman exclaimed: “From what we know, there were many white consultants as well as people of colour who reported her. The hospital was worried about its reputation so they didn't take action.”

Rosanna and Ms Kleeman were also joined by businesswoman and activist Linda Belos, who argued that class, more than race, aided Letby.

Mrs Belos said: “I wonder whether if she had been white and working class, whether she would have had as much leeway to do the terrible things that she did.

“I am not sure that a white working-class nurse would have got away with it. We're not talking about one or two incidents.”

Mrs Belos added however that Letby’s white privilege certainly was a factor in the nurse’s ability to avoid scrutiny.

“Race is not a red herring. The word equality comes to mind. There ought to be equal treatment for both patients, the babies and the nurses inside the NHS.”

Official data published by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) in 2022 showed that Asian and minority ethnic nurses are referred to the regulator more often than their white counterparts.

Mrs Belos continued: “Somebody got away with it. These children will not come back. Some are damaged and are still alive. It's terrible.”