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Northland real estate agent sorry for homophobic slur to LGBTQI youth worker | Stuff.co.nz

Northland real estate agent sorry for homophobic slur to LGBTQI youth worker | Stuff.co.nz

A real estate agent called a rainbow youth worker a “f….. supporter” after she spoke out against a homophobic assault.

The real estate agent has since apologised for using the slur, but the target of his comment is still disappointed.

On Sunday, InsideOUT’s managing director Tabby Besley told Stuff about an alleged attack on a gay couple during Wellington’s pride celebrations. 

InsideOUT is a charity which supports LGBTQIA-plus youth.

Immediately after the news reports were published, Besley received an email, which Stuff has seen, saying: “You are just a fagott supporter” (sic).

She said the email left her shocked.

MAARTEN HOLL/STUFF
InsideOUT managing director Tabby Besley was labelled a “f…..” supporter in an email.

“[I’m] concerned that there are people out there who may be actively discriminating against people who have every right to seek a service from them. In my job I hear stories like that all the time.”

Stuff has confirmed the sender, Kim Gyton, is a licensed real estate agent and an independent contractor with Property Brokers based in Whangārei.

On Monday, Property Brokers chief executive Bill Highet confirmed it had received a complaint about Gyton’s conduct, which it was taking seriously.

He said Gyton had an “an otherwise unblemished record” and had been under considerable stress.

“The comment made does not reflect in any way the views of Property Brokers or its employees.”

The company is considering disciplinary action, Highet told Stuff, but that process is confidential.

Kim Gyton’s profile on Property Brokers’ website.

On Monday, Gyton sent Besley another email offering his “sincerest” apology. 

“I did not mean any offence at all it was just I did not like the story personally,” he wrote.

Gyton claimed he had been in a “bad space” as several family members had been ill. 

Besley said while she had compassion for Gyton, she was disappointed with his response.

“It doesn’t really provide any reasons for going out of your way to send such an email in the first place. Rather than just making a genuine apology it’s making excuses.”

Bindi Norwell, chief executive of industry body Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ), said it had also received a complaint and had suspended Gyton’s membership.

The organisation, which has the Rainbow Tick, is disappointed at Gyton’s unacceptable behaviour, which breaches its code of practice, Norwell told Stuff

“In accordance with our rules we are now working through the process in order to deal with the member in question in a timely manner.”

Gyton said he was unable to comment while Property Brokers and REINZ were investigating.

The Real Estate Authority had not received a complaint about Gyton.

A spokesman said any action it takes “will depend on the facts of the case”.

This content was originally published here.

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