(JTA) — The Landlords Union, an organization in the United Kingdom, is under fire for using a photo of Auschwitz to illustrate a news release about new government policies against rogue landlords.
The image reportedly first appeared on the news release on the union’s property118.com website two weeks ago, the British tabloid Metro reported, but was only removed on Monday.
A post with the same image also appeared on Twitter.
“Disgusting use of this photograph. I suggest you go and visit Auschwitz you then might realize how inappropriate this picture is. Remove it as soon as possible,” read one response. “Was wondering how it relates to their article,” read another. “Quite shocking,” read another response.
In a post to property118.com on Tuesday morning, Neil Patterson, identified as a member of The Landlord’s Union, posted an apology for using the image, saying “I had no idea that the image I selected was one of Auschwitz and I certainly didn’t intend to offend the memorial or indeed anybody else.” He said he found the photo after searching for the keyword Prison on the Pexels stock images website. He added that Pexels also has since removed the image.
In addition to the apology, Patterson made a donation to the Auschwitz Memorial.
He said he did not know about the Twitter storm over the image since he does not have a Twitter account. He added that the use of the image also had been reported to Twitter, who emailed the Union on Tuesday morning to say that the “were taking no action on the basis that we had not breached their T&C’s or any copyright or other laws,” according to Patterson.