Conservative Barnet Council member Brian Coleman pens apology for 'Nazi blackshirt 'email

Times Series: Father-of-three Mr Cohen said last month he would like to see the councillor removed from his post Father-of-three Mr Cohen said last month he would like to see the councillor removed from his post

It is more than seven weeks late but Tory councillor Brian Coleman has reportedly penned an apology to members of the public he labelled “Nazi blackshirts” and “disloyal Israelis”.

The Totteridge representative was ordered by a standards tribunal to say sorry to Charlotte Jago and Ron Cohen following the email outbursts earlier this year.

Councillor Coleman initially refused, saying he was “under no obligation” to do so, and he subsequently missed the apology deadline of September 6.

But following talks with Barnet Council leader Richard Cornelius earlier this month, the former Barnet Mayor appears to have finally put together a note of contrition.

Dr Jago and father-of-three Mr Cohen both say they are yet to receive the letters but a council officer told them he understood they were in the post.

Former GLA member Cllr Coleman was hauled in front of the council’s standards committee in March following complaints about the offensive emails.

In the correspondence, he called Jewish Mr Cohen a “disloyal Israeli” and told Dr Jago that “70 years ago you would have been a member of the (Nazi) blackshirts”.

The former cabinet member was found guilty of breaking the members’ code of conduct, a decision upheld at an appeal hearing in August.

Speaking about how she felt after receiving the abusive correspondence, Dr Jago said last month: “Being likened to a Nazi was incredibly upsetting - the more so because a number of my grandparents' German Jewish friends were murdered by the Nazis, so to liken me to that was horrific.

“Being called anti-Israeli when in fact I support the existence of a Jewish homeland - who could not support that, knowing what the Jews have endured throughout history? - was inaccurate as well as very hurtful.”

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

12:19pm Fri 26 Oct 12

Mrs Angry, Broken Barnet blog says...

This headline is rather misleading: there is no evidence yet that such letters have actually been written, let alone sent!
This headline is rather misleading: there is no evidence yet that such letters have actually been written, let alone sent! Mrs Angry, Broken Barnet blog

8:35pm Fri 26 Oct 12

Fiona Brickwood says...

So Coleman has refused to apologise, only finally agreeing to do so when he is facing suspension, apparently in an attempt to avoid that suspension. In my book, an apology is an expression of remorse, offering balm to the wound by showing genuine regret for the hurt caused. I think we need another term for those pseudo-apologies which serve the needs of the offender, rather than those of the victim.
So Coleman has refused to apologise, only finally agreeing to do so when he is facing suspension, apparently in an attempt to avoid that suspension. In my book, an apology is an expression of remorse, offering balm to the wound by showing genuine regret for the hurt caused. I think we need another term for those pseudo-apologies which serve the needs of the offender, rather than those of the victim. Fiona Brickwood

8:51pm Fri 26 Oct 12

Cadwallader says...

Cynical attempt to curry favour as rest of career arrives around ankles? Could be!
Cynical attempt to curry favour as rest of career arrives around ankles? Could be! Cadwallader

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree