VA manager Robin Paul just resigned following public outcry at her senseless elf Christmas photos that belittled suicidal and distraught veterans. Robin Paul was a manager and counselor in a VA military transition program based in Indiana.
Paul claims she is the victim of a misunderstanding. What do you think? Are veterans better off? Did Paul get what she deserved?
RELATED: See all Robin Paul elf photos
In December, Paul made numerous photos that poked fun at veterans suffering from suicidal tendencies and drug withdrawals. The photos were circulated inside the facility with other colleagues. Paul substituted an elf doll for the veteran when taking the pictures. The photos first surfaced in major news media outlets last month.
Paul accepted a temporary 90-day suspension of her social work license in a settlement with the Indiana Attorney General’s Office. She was paid while on leave, but just last week decided she should resign from VA due to harassment.
Paul claims to be the victim of harassment once the story broke. She reportedly received death threats and eventually sought the protection of the police.
Read the full statement from Robin Paul:
The “elf” email I sent in December 2014 was to an internal staff email group following a clinic holiday lunch party. I take full responsibility for sending the email; however, the intent of the email and pictures has been misrepresented. My intent was not to mock Veterans; the intent was to thank the team for their work in dealing with tough issues on a daily basis. The elf did not represent a Veteran; it was a toy elf — nothing more. However, I understand how taken out of context, the email and pictures could be misconstrued. I used poor judgment in sending out this email.
Since the initial press coverage, my family and I have been subjected to harassment and hostility. I received death threats, my minor child was harassed, and we had to seek police protection. In the best interest of the VA and my family, I voluntarily agreed to a temporary summary suspension of my license pending further investigation.
Even though I have had an excellent work history with the VA, my career with the VA is effectively over as a result of this incident and the resulting public and political pressure. Accordingly, on April 7, 2015, I voluntarily resigned from the VA. I am truly sorry to our Veterans and anyone else who I offended by my actions — that was not my intent. I seek the public’s forgiveness, and I respectfully request that the public refrain from directing further hatred and hostility toward me, my family or the VA.
Is this an example of public pressure ridding VA of a bad actors? Or, is this a case of bad luck for Robin Paul?