Out in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, a nurse who was a member of staff at a nursing facility was terminated after posting a series of TikTok videos. In these videos she talked about unplugging a patient’s ventilator so she could charge her phone, increasing the dosages of sleeping pills for her patients so she could get more sleep herself, and “slapping patients for a million dollars.”
The nurse in question, Kelly Morris, was on staff at The Citadel in Winston-Salem and posted to social media platforms using the screen name “bubblegumkelz,” The Independent reported on the matter. In response to her termination, she took to social media again by starting a GoFundMe page entitled, “Fired over a TikTok?!?”
As written in the text of her TikTok videos, Morris stated “I’d unplug your vent to charge my cell phone.” “Me on my way to give my patients drugs so WE can get some good sleep tonight.” “Me making sure all my patients sleep all night cause they kept me up last night.” She also chimes in with a voice-over in a few of her videos. In one such voice-over video, she stated “That’s what I always do and they never catch me. Ain’t nobody gonna catch me.” “Would you slap a patient for a million dollars?” she stated in a caption in another video before speaking up to answer her own question as she slid on a pair of sunglasses, stating “It ain’t about the money.”
In response to the outrage, Morris put out a statement on the situation, saying, “The only thing hurt in my TikTok videos were people’s feelings. All my videos are comedy skits. I can understand how someone can be upset but not to the degree they are taking it. No one was ever harmed and I treat all my patients with great care and they all love me.”
Accordius Health, the parent company for the nursing facility involved, put forth its own statement on the subject to WXII 12 News:
The Citadel at Winston Salem was made aware of TikTok videos by an employee last week. Our team investigated content and acted immediately. Misuse and unprofessional use of social media platforms by employees violates our core values and is not tolerated. Any form of resident abuse is never tolerated. Be assured we have handled the situation and reported her actions to all appropriate state and federal agencies. We love our residents; provide for and protect them every day. We are grateful for the global healthcare team that protects the elderly with pride in our profession.
“Morris said she thinks this is an example of so-called ‘cancel culture’ and said she feels as though it is a targeted campaign against her from people who do not understand humor,” reported WXII News.
As of yet, the GoFundMe campaign has only managed to raise $245 of the goal which was set at $20,000. the page itself reads, “First I’m going to say to the people that were offended by my ‘jokes’ on TikTok, I will apologize. No one was actually harmed or in any danger, they were bad taste jokes. I am out of work due to these ‘jokes.’ Second, I still have children that are in my custody as a single mother that still need basic needs. I’m no longer commenting on the negativity I am receiving.”