• Dubbo Regional Council. (Facebook: Dubbo Regional Council)Source: Facebook: Dubbo Regional Council
An email, seen by NITV News, shows a racist 'joke' shared by a Dubbo Shire Councillor and Bank of Queensland employee.
By
Keira Jenkins

Source:
NITV News
26 Feb 2020 - 4:46 PM  UPDATED 26 Feb 2020 - 6:47 PM

A Dubbo Shire Councillor and Bank of Queensland employee has been caught out sharing a racist 'joke' via email from his employee account.

In January, Kevin Parker sent an email with the subject line titled "JET BLACK" from a Bank of Queensland (BOQ) email address to a number of people, including other Bank of Queensland staff and members of the Dubbo Regional Council.

The email, seen by NITV News, goes on to say "the world's first aboriginal [sic] version of SNOW WHITE... has been put on hold due to an industrial dispute.

"All seven Aboriginal dwarfs, Dealer, Stealer, Mugger, Carjacker, Shoplifter, Drinker, Bludger, have walked off the set," the email read.

"After refusing to sing the HI Ho song. All 7 are insisting they have no F....ing intentionn [sic] of singing ITS OFF TO WORK WE GO."

One recipient of the email, fellow Dubbo councillor Jane Diffy, said she deleted the email when she received it.

"I just read it and went 'this is not appropriate' and deleted it," she told NITV News on Wednesday.

While another recipient, former Dubbo Council mayor, Mathew Dickerson said he was "catching up" on emails he'd been sent while holidaying overseas with his family when he received Mr Parker's email.

"My first reaction when I read it was disappointment that people in our community still hold such stereotypical views of Aboriginal people," he said.

"When I further considered that this was one of our elected councillors, I was even more disappointed but that disappointment soon turned to resignation when I considered that this was yet another example of our current group of councillors being completely out of touch with the modern thriving city we have in Dubbo – and its people."

Dubbo's current mayor Ben Shields said in a statement to NITV News that the "contents of the email are disturbing and absolutely do not align with the values of myself or Dubbo Regional Council".

BOQ's Reconciliation web page says the bank is committed to making a positive impact in the communities it operates in.

"Bank of Queensland’s vision for reconciliation is that all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities are afforded equity, dignity and respect," the website says.

National NAIDOC Committee's co-chair John-Paul Janke said the 'joke' reminds him of the comments children used to make in the primary school playground in Far North Queensland when he was growing up in the 1970s.

"I was shocked to see some of us haven’t matured past this bygone era," he said.

"Disturbingly that this is allegedly circulated by a prominent person in the Dubbo community is deflating.

"It's really sad to see on one hand the organisations touting their commitments and respects to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through RAPs or NAIDOC Week events, but then we’ve got a senior leader in both organisations doing the complete opposite.

“Circulating this a joke does not show respect, it doesn’t show that you’ve afforded equity and dignity  to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

"Its not funny and I thought as a nation we’ve grown out of this. Seems for some ignorant people, it's back to the future."

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