The Financial Post reports in its Tuesday, Jan. 7, edition that Manulife Financial chief executive officer Roy Gori apologized to employees for a spoof rap video that was part of the executive group's year-end message. A Bloomberg dispatch to the Post reports that the internal video, the third in an annual series featuring different music genres, was retracted after some employees said they were offended by it. The Toronto-based insurer said the video, in which executives wore hoodies and sunglasses, was meant to be "lighthearted." Manulife said in an e-mailed statement Monday: "We regret creating this video, removed it immediately and held a forum to apologize to and hear directly from our employees. ... We strive to have an environment where all employees are treated with respect and dignity, and the recent video clearly didn't meet that objective." Bloomberg says finance executives have increasingly turned to humorous videos in an attempt to connect with employees, sometimes eliciting laughs and sometimes groans. Manulife's video, with participation by mostly white managers, comes at a time of heightened sensitivity over issues such as race relations, cultural misappropriation and workplace diversity.
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