Labour MP apologises over ‘token ghetto boy’ remarks in 2010 blog post

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Kensington MP Emma Dent Coad provoked controversy after comments about Shaun Bailey resurfaced.

Emma Dent Coad (PA)

A Labour MP has apologised for referring to a Tory London Assembly member as a “token ghetto boy” in a blog posted before she was elected.

Kensington MP Emma Dent Coad provoked controversy after the 2010 comments about Shaun Bailey resurfaced.

Mr Bailey accused the MP of writing “racist, hate filled” remarks about him in the blog post.

Ms Dent Coad claimed in the piece that the then Hammersmith Conservative parliamentary candidate had “stigmatised” the area he was born in by referring to it as a “ghetto”.

She went on to write: “Who can say where this man will ever fit in, however hard he tries? One day he is the ‘token ghetto boy’ standing behind D Cameron, the next ‘looking interested’ beside G Osborne. Ever felt used?”

The MP said she had been repeating what other people had said and her comments were taken “the wrong way”.


She told BBC Radio London: “If he was offended by me repeating what other people have said then I do apologise.

“Clearly, I shouldn’t have repeated it. People have taken it the wrong way.”

Mr Bailey said that he had never been referred to in those terms before and he would not use language like ‘ghetto’ in a way that was disparaging to where he grew up.

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