A black woman is furious and demanding an apology after she was sent the “racist” password “charcoal shade” – by the NHS.
Leanda Probert – who suffers from crippling condition fibromyalgia – was sent a letter asking her to book a pain management appointment via an NHS website.
But mum-of-one Leanda, 31, was horrified when she discovered the “highly offensive” password within the letter from NHS North Somerset.
Distressed Leanda, from Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, said: “When I opened the letter I thought that really they must be taking the mick and having a laugh.
“I was very taken aback and highly offended.
“I understand that these passwords are computer generated, but I just think that certain words should not be included because they could be offensive to some people.
“I find it offensive because I am a black woman and I think that those two words ‘charcoal shade’ coupled together is just too much and I found it very very offensive.
“The letter must have been put in an envelope by someone – why did they not proof read it and realise it could be offensive?”
Leanda, who lives with partner Damien Field, 29, and daughter Gabriella, two, added: “I don’t think it was intentional racial abuse and I really do not think that this has been done maliciously.
“But I do think they need to change their policies and procedures to make sure some words simply do not appear in passwords.
“This password they gave me was thoughtless and offensive and despite complaining I am yet to receive an apology.”
Leanda was diagnosed with ?bromyalgia two years ago after more than a decade of suffering with the condition which causes widespread pain and extreme tiredness – but has no known cause or cure.
She said: “I have trouble getting up and down on the sofa, insomnia, nausea, IBS and forgetfulness.
“Sometimes my partner has to give me a list of things to do because my memory is awful.”
A spokesman for NHS North Somerset said: “North Somerset CCG would like to apologise for any offence that the password contained within the letter may have caused.
“The password was generated automatically by the central choose and book system with the words themselves randomly selected by an electronic database.”