Councillor Khaled Noor has become the latest victim of the Labour Party’s handling of Islamophobia. He has asked the Redbridge Labour Group for many months to hold a proper inquiry into an Islamophobic tweet sent from the official Redbridge Labour Party Twitter Account.
The offending tweet was sent on 29th November 2020. The Leader of the Redbridge Labour Group acknowledged that the tweet was “incendiary” and “extremely disrespectful and inaccurate”, offensive in nature and apologised to the local community.
“The tweet must have been sent by someone who has access to the Twitter Account and if the Group really wanted to, it would not have been difficult to identify the culprit” said Councillor Noor.
When the Councillor tried to raise concerns about the tweet and a lack of detailed investigation, all discussion was “closed down” during a Labour Group Meeting. And when Councillor Noor complained that there had been a better response from the Group Chair to an antisemitic incident at a local Branch meeting, he was accused of using an antisemitic trope. When Councillor Noor tried to raise a question at the Full Council Meeting about the Labour Council’s approach to Islamophobia including training for staff, there was a further complaint against him. When Councillor Noor did not accept to give an “undertaking” not to publicly support the right to self-determination of Palestine, he was penalised with a Written Warning. When Councillor Noor had protested and spoke up against the irregularities at a local Branch Selection meeting, he was punished with a Final Written Warning. As a result, he has faced disciplinary proceedings.
Councillor Noor has appealed the Labour Group’s punishment of having the Labour Whip taken away and fears that it is a ruse to ensure he is not selected for the next Local Election in 2022. His Appeal raises various concerns about fairness of treatment: his accusers were allowed to participate in the vote against him; an investigation was entirely flawed and did not allow him the opportunity to make representations; the process was slowed down for political advantage; Labour Group members have been briefing the press with confidential details about the investigation and there has been no investigation of the leaks.
“I have had to defend myself against these leaks by telling my side of the story just to ensure fairness” said Councillor Noor. “My worry is that this is part of a wider problem within the Labour Party. I am proud to be a member of the Party and I want to ensure it is inclusive and fair in opposing all forms of prejudice. I am a passionate campaigner for justice and equal treatment” he said.
He has lined up a number of Councillors who support his Appeal, which will be heard next week. Councillor Noor added “We all have the responsibility to work for a kinder politics; set aside hatred and division, and demonstrate that dialogue can create a safer and harmonious society for all.”