10/03/2011 06:26 EDT | Updated 12/03/2011 05:12 EST

Air Canada Apologizes Over Memo Linking Security Concerns To Displaced Aboriginal Families

AP File

WINNIPEG - Air Canada says it never meant to offend anyone in a memo about the airline's decision to stop using downtown Winnipeg hotels for crew layovers.

The internal bulletin said employees will be staying at a hotel closer to the airport because of security concerns downtown.

The memo noted that 1,000 displaced people from rural Manitoba are staying in hotels in Winnipeg's core.

It said police have seen public drunkenness which has made certain areas — quote — "susceptible to crimes of violence."

Many of the displaced are from First Nations that were threatened by flooding last spring.

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs says it was racist of Air Canada to link an increased security risk to displaced aboriginal families and has asked for a retraction.