Apology could lead to Pine readmission
ROSLYN PINE, who was suspended from the Board of Deputies for six years over comments which have been described as Islamophobic and antiArab, may be able to return early if she apologises.
Mrs Pine, who represented Finchley United Synagogue, had shared tweets describing Muslims as “the vilest of animals” as well as calling Arabs “so evil”.
Speaking to the JC in June, she said she “detests the creed of Islam” and that “killing us and destroying Israel is an Islamic fundamental”. These comments were the subject of a fresh complaint by former deputy Anthony Tricot.
The Board gave her an “unprecedented” six-year suspension in July after she was found to have brought the organi- sation into disrepute. But, following an appeal and a fight over whether the Board had the power to suspend Mrs Pine for that long, several sources have told the JC that the Board has proposed amending the six-year suspension to be reviewed after two years, on the condition that Mrs Pine publicly expresses remorse for her comments.
The JC understands that no formal decision has yet been taken, and there remain disagreements at the executive level over the disciplinary action.
The matter was referred back to the executive committee, which convened a special meeting on November 12. Another meeting will be held in the coming weeks.
No details of the executive committee’s discussions has been communicated to deputies.
In a previous disciplinary case against Mrs Pine, regarding complaints that she referred to fellow deputies as “modern day Kapos”, and that she joked during a meeting that the Swedish foreign minister was “too old to be raped”, she refused to apologise despite being asked to do so by the Board’s constitution committee. Mrs Pine was ordered to issue an apology to members of the International Division but refused.
A Board spokesperson said: “The process is ongoing and soon to be concluded by the Executive Committee. The result will be conveyed to Roslyn Pine. It is therefore not appropriate to comment further at this time.”
When Mrs Pine appealed her suspension, the Board’s appeal panel found the executive committee had made a series of failings in its handling of her case, including “shortcomings” in its record-keeping.
The Board’s appeal committee said it chose not to uphold the initial suspension partly due to the executive committee’s failure to hold an official meeting before announcing her six-year suspension. Instead, the appeal panel’s report said, the Board’s chief executive Gillian Merron conducted a “telephone poll” of other members of the executive.
Mrs Merron provided an undated record of the poll to the appeal panel. But it included “no notes of the conversation she had… It merely shows a tick against the names,” the report said.
And given that there was no precedent for a six-year suspension, the panel found that the disciplinary action chosen was “irregular”.
But it also upheld the earlier ruling by the Board’s constitution committee that Mrs Pine had breached the code of conduct.
No formal decision has yet been taken