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Journalist hits back at trolls after immigration column sparked personal abuse

Annabal 1A regional daily journalist has hit back at internet trolls who subjected her to a series of personal attacks after she wrote a column celebrating the benefits of immigration.

Annabal Bagdi, who works at Wolverhampton-based daily the Express & Star, has thanked colleagues and others who supported her after she received abuse online following the column’s publication.

In her piece, Annabal, who has Punjabi roots, wrote of how post-war immigration has helped the UK to “flourish” and said it was “heartbreaking” that anyone could suggest immigrants such as her father had “brought little, if any, value to society”.

But after it was published by the E&S, she was subjected to a series of tirades from Twitter trolls.

One, posting under the name ‘Steve Bradley’, wrote: “You are a f*****g peice [sic] of s***. Immigration has ruined this country.”

In another post, which according to Twitter was posted from Kansas City, USA, the user added: “I read your peice [sic] in the E&S. What a delusional moron you are. This country has been ruined by immigrants.”

Another user posting under the name ‘Jim’, who describes himself as a supporter of the far-right activist known as ‘Tommy Robinson’, wrote: “It’s an absolute rubbish article, twisting stats to fit her narrative, she’s never going to be honest coming from her background, worse [sic] of all, immigration doesn’t effect [sic] the middle to upper classes.”

However, Labour’s Wolverhampton South East MP Pat McFadden praised Annabal’s courage in writing the column.

He posted on Twitter: “It shouldn’t need bravery to write a column like this but turns out it does. Well done to [Annabal].”

Annabal, pictured, told HTFP: “I always knew there would be a mixed reaction to my column on immigration, but I didn’t expect some of the abusive comments and personal attacks which came along with it.

“The support from my colleagues and the wider community has been amazing, and I’m really grateful for all the kind words.

“At a time when immigration in the UK could change significantly as part of our Brexit deal, I think it’s really important we don’t forget the contributions of the immigrants who came to help rebuild post-war Britain.

“I’m very proud of my Punjabi roots and my family’s history – just like so many others in this country. It won’t be a story I’m going to stop telling anytime soon, no matter what the trolls have to say.”

2 comments

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  • October 24, 2018 at 11:13 am
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    oh dear. so predictable in this glorious age of anti-social media. She should not have to be brave. The trolls are just cowards.

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  • October 24, 2018 at 3:50 pm
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    There are pros and cons to immigration but I’d like to think that on the majority of immigrants to the UK make a positive contribution, whether it is helping to staff our schools, hospitals, care homes, or help build our towns and cities – not to mention our transport system for which they cannot be held to blame. That said – no one deserves that kind of abuse but it is often metered out by cowards behind the curtain that social media allows.

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