Friday, January 19, 2007

Racism Returns

(Courtesy of the Lancashire Telegraph)

THE chief executive of an agency charged with regenerating the North West has admitted sending a racist joke in a text message.

Steven Broomhead, who heads the North West Development Agency, apologised after it emerged he had sent a joke about a Pakistani shopkeeper via text.

He said: "I received an inappropriate text message to my mobile.

"Without thinking, I forwarded the message on to the mobile phone of an individual outside the NWDA.

"Forwarding this message was an error of judgment on my part and is something that I deeply regret.

"It was inappropriate and thoughtless and does not reflect my personal opinions in any way.
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"There was no intention on my part to cause offence and I would like to apologise unreservedly."

The NWDA is responsible for supporting businesses, encouraging investment, lobbying for better infastructure and promoting the region's quality of life.


Many Local Government employees have been sacked or reprimanded for similar offences, so I do hope that the investigation comes down heavy on Mr. Broomhead. Ignorance, in this instance, is no excuse; particularly given the furore this week over racism on Big Brother. It is worth considering that Mr. Broomhead is on a salary of over £170,000. I like that "Without thinking, I forwarded a message...." I received loads of text messages over Christmas asking me to "forward" them and "not break the chain". It is impossible to "forward" a message "without thinking" after all you have to first of all work out who you are going to forward it to.

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