30 OCTOBER 2017

Allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour have come to light after a group of staff and researchers working in Westminster shared stories via a WhatsApp group.

On Friday, the prime minister’s spokeswoman said their information about MPs and ministers who have behaved inappropriately was “deeply concerning”.

The group of Westminster staffers is reported by the Sun newspaper to have named senior politicians they did not feel safe around, including numerous senior MPs across the parties.

Fawcett Society Chief Executive Sam Smethers says:

"Sexual harassment has been normalised and tolerated in our workplaces and on our streets for far too long.

"In politics this isn't just a problem in Westminster, but also across our town halls. It's political parties which also need reform, so that women can participate in politics rather than being driven out or silenced."

In July this year, Fawcett published a hard-hitting new report, which concludes that local government is ‘not fit for the future’ as a result of a range of outdated practices and attitudes that hold back gender equality. 

The final report of the Fawcett Society’s Local Government Commission includes the shocking finding that almost four in ten female councillors having experienced sexist comments from within their own party, and a third from their council colleagues.

Read more

Read 'Does Local Government Work for Women?', a year-long study led by the Fawcett Society in partnership with the Local Government Information Unit, which investigated sexism in local government and contains recommendations to help solve the issues faced by women in town halls.

Read more news about women in Parliament here.