Shirley Sherrod, who was ousted from her federal job
after the release of an edited video in which she appeared to make a racist remark, won't be going back to work at the Agriculture Department, despite an offer by the agency at a meeting Tuesday.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, who fired Sherrod in July
, then quickly apologized for the misunderstanding, said she has agreed to work as a consultant to the department at some point in the future to help USDA with its civil rights performance, the Associated Press
Sherrod said Tuesday she could not agree to the full-time job -- reportedly in the Office of Advocacy and Outreach -- "with all that has happened." She accepted Vilsack's apology but felt she could likely be more helpful to the department in the future "if I just take a little break."
Sherrod was forced out after a conservative website put up a portion of a speech she made in March where she admitted not doing all she could at one point to help a white farmer. But the incident occurred in 1987, when Sherrod worked for a non-profit in Georgia. And she went on to say -- this part of the speech was not posted -- that she had recognized her error and later helped the grower, becoming friends with him and his wife.