Labor staffer quits after forged email attack

A senior staffer in Labor leader Anthony Albanese's team has resigned over a fake dossier that she described as 'malicious' and 'defamatory'.

Deputy chief of staff Sabina Husic resigned on Tuesday night after an email, which Mr Albanese described as "fake" and The Daily Telegraph also independently verified was fabricated, had been circulated widely among Labor staff and MPs.

Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese with his former deputy chief of staff Sabina Husic in a photo uploaded to the anonymous website.
Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese with his former deputy chief of staff Sabina Husic in a photo uploaded to the anonymous website.

A screenshot of the fake email and a photo of Mr Albanese giving Ms Husic a friendly kiss on her head were included in the dossier of allegations uploaded to a website anonymously and sent to media on Monday night.

In her resignation letter Ms Husic said she had been the subject of a "malicious, false, fake and defamatory attack" on her character.

"This was highly distressing and has had an incredibly harmful effect on my personal wellbeing," she said.

"The defamatory attacks and online harassment I have experienced are beyond the bounds of what should be required for this job or any staff position."

Ms Husic, who rose through the Labor ranks working previously for Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews and most recently for Mr Albanese.

Sabina Husic..
Sabina Husic..

She is the sister of federal Labor frontbencher and Western Sydney MP Ed Husic.

Ms Husic said in her letter to chief of staff Tim Gartrell she had already been on leave for "mental health" on two separate occasions in recent months following her diagnosis with depression.

"For women staff, it is important to feel safe in their roles and workplaces - that very much extends to their mental health and wellbeing," she said.

"I no longer feel safe in this role. I have decided to put my health and wellbeing first."

Asked about the dossier on Tuesday, prior to Ms Husic's resignation, Mr Albanese repeatedly said: "It's fake."

He also defended the culture of his office.

"It's a very good office. I have an outstanding office."

It is understood one disgruntled member of the Labor Party was connected to the anonymous allegations, though the dossier claimed to be authored by five people.

Ms Husic was praised by senior Labor figures, Mark butler and Chris Bowen following the resignation.

"Sabina is an outstanding thinker on modern communications with excellent political instincts," Mr Butler, a frontbencher, told Nine Newspapers. "She has a very bright future."

Opposition health spokesman Mr Bowen described her departure as "a big loss".

Originally published as Labor staffer quits after forged email attack

Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese. Picture: Adam Yip/ Second Story
Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese. Picture: Adam Yip/ Second Story


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