Jacintha Saldanha Left Three Suicide Notes Calling Out Kate Middleton's Hospital

Illustration for article titled Jacintha Saldanha Left Three Suicide Notes Calling Out Kate Middletons Hospital

Jacintha Saldanha, the British nurse who killed herself after falling for a Australian radio station's prank phone call and giving up private medical information about Kate Middleton's royal pregnancy, wrote not one, not two, but three suicide notes before she hanged herself last Friday.

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According to reports, one is about the prank call from the 2Day FM DJs, another outlines her funeral arrangements, and the third criticizes her employers and coworkers at the hospital. Her family has been given typed copies of the three notes. And, of course, so have investigators, who are trying to figure out the role the station and the hospital played in Saldanha's death.

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The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is formally investigating the prank — not the prankers themselves (who have half-apologized, half-said it wasn't their fault and they never meant for it to happen, which, obviously), but the radio station, which "vetted" this call but also "vetted" a prank in the past that involved convincing a teenage rape survivor to talk about her sex life while strapped to a lie detector on air. Too little, too late, perhaps?

But the station's parent company is donating £326,000 from its advertising profits to a memorial fund set up in Mrs Saldanha's name by King Edward VII Hospital, so that's nice. We guess.

A spokeswoman for the hospital said no one in senior management knew what the notes said, but that they "were very clear that there were no disciplinary issues in this matter" and that both the nurses involved in the royal prank had been offered "full support" and "it was made clear they were victims of a cruel journalistic trick." At any rate, it looks like Saldanha had a lot to say. It's just too bad we're going to hear it now.

[The Guardian]

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DISCUSSION

MercuryCobra
MercuryCobra

This might be an unpopular opinion, but I A) don't see the point in attempting to assign blame and B) think that if we are going to assign blame, it lies 100% with Ms. Saldanha. Suicide is a terribly selfish decision, and one the Australian DJs had no hand in making. Unless someone is harassed with the intent that the harassment cause them to commit suicide (intent here meaning purpose or knowledge, but not recklessness or negligence) I can't see how you can assign blame for their decision to end their life to the harasser. Unless the DJs knew or reasonably should have known that their prank would end in Ms. Saldanha's death, I don't think they're culpable any more than every other person in her life who may have caused her distress.

This isn't to say I don't think her suicide was a tragedy. It is. But it's also nobody's fault but her own.