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ADL lauds ‘redemption’ of disgraced designer Galliano

JTA

January 18, 2013 | 9:07 am

British designer John Galliano for French fashion house Dior appears at the end of his Spring/Summer 2011 women's collection during Paris Fashion Week in this Oct.r 1, 2010 file photo. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/Files

British designer John Galliano for French fashion house Dior appears at the end of his Spring/Summer 2011 women's collection during Paris Fashion Week in this Oct.r 1, 2010 file photo. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/Files

The Anti-Defamation League said disgraced designer John Galliano has changed his beliefs and now understands the evils of anti-Semitism.

Galliano, who lost his job as the top designer at Christian Dior after he was arrested for making anti-Semitic statements at a Paris bar, had dedicated "significant" time to understanding anti-Semitism, the ADL's National Director Abraham Foxman said in a statement Friday.

“Mr. Galliano has worked arduously in changing his worldview and dedicated a significant amount of time to researching, reading, and learning about the evils of anti-Semitism and bigotry,” Foxman said.

Galliano blamed his behavior, which included professing his love for Adolf Hitler, on addictions to drugs and alcohol. A French court later ruled he had made "public insults based on origin, religious affiliation, race or ethnicity" in several incidents.

The ADL welcomed Galliano’s “recovery and redemption,” adding: “Along his journey to recovery he met with us on numerous occasions. He has accepted full responsibility for his previous remarks and understands that hurtful comments have no place in our society.”

The statement also welcomed an invitation by the designer Oscar de la Renta for Galliano to spend time in de la Renta’s studio.

“We wish him much success and look forward to working with him again in the near future as a spokesman against anti-Semitism, intolerance and bigotry,” the ADL said.

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