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The Association of Air Medical Services (AAMS) has postponed this year’s Air Medical Transport Conference (AMTC) due to unrest in the host city of Charlotte, North Carolina.
AAMS president and CEO Rick Sherlock announced the decision in an email to show attendees on the afternoon of Sept. 22.
“AAMS’ major concern is for the safety and welfare of our members, our industry, and patients you serve on a daily basis,” Sherlock wrote, less than 24 hours after North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory declared a state of emergency to help restore order in Charlotte. The city was rocked by violent protests following the fatal shooting of Keith L. Scott by a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer on Sept. 20.
“The City of Charlotte, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, and our venues have taken every precaution and believe AMTC would be successful as scheduled,” Sherlock’s email continued. “However, due to the events of the past 48 hours and the events being planned in Charlotte for the next three to five days, AAMS has made the very difficult decision to postpone this year’s AMTC from its Sept 26-28 dates. We believe continuing as scheduled would detract from AMTC’s world-class educational and networking experiences.
“We are working closely with the City of Charlotte to find alternative dates and will keep you informed as more information becomes available. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we’ve been navigating the developing situation here in Charlotte.”
In an email to Vertical, AAMS director of communications Blair Beggan explained that the organization made the decision to postpone the show after learning that additional protests were planned over the weekend and possibly early next week. “Our folks’ safety is priority, bottom line,” she wrote.