Tory MP says she wears a stab vest to meetings with her constituents

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Floral tributes to Sir David Amess MP outside Parliament on October 19, 2021 (Image: Getty Images)
Floral tributes to Sir David Amess MP outside Parliament on October 19, 2021 (Image: Getty Images)

An MP has revealed she wears a stab vest to constituency surgeries since the murder of her colleague Sir David Amess.

Virginia Crosbie, the Tory MP for Ynys Mon in Wales, also warned that the scale of abuse facing politicians is getting worse.

Last year 26-year-old Ali Harbi Ali was convicted of the murder of the veteran MP Sir David as he went about his work.

Just a fortnight before the EU referendum in 2016, the Labour MP Jo Cox was also murdered in her Batley and Spen constituency.

In the wake of Sir David's murder in 2021 Tory MP Mike Freer said he had started wearing a stab vest and carrying panic alarms for surgeries.

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Now, Tory MP Ms Crossbie told GB News: "I have been in difficult situations.

Tory MP says she wears a stab vest to meetings with her constituentsConservative MP Virginia Crosbie (InYourArea)

"I have surgeries, I do face-fo-face surgeries where I wear a stab jacket, obviously following the murder of David Amess".

She added: "And also, I have security protection as well. I think it's important I have direct contact with my constituents.

"And, unfortunately, this is one of the things I have to do to ensure that I can actually do the job that I was elected to do."

The Conservative MP James Sunderland also told The Times that he feared Sir David and Ms Cox "won't be the last".

"Heaven forbid it happens again, but it's a question of when, not if, and what we have to do is do everything in our power to prepare us for those situations."

Ms Crosbie, who was first elected in December 2019, has spoken before about the threats and abuse she has received, and said things have not improved for MPs.

"Absolutely not. If anything, it's even worse. And it's not just myself - it's a lot of other, particularly female, MPs. Even before we've had breakfast many of us have received one or two threats."

She called for more "accountability" on social media, adding: "I think there's an awful lot more that we can do in terms of social media and abuse.

"The reality is people can turn to social media with impunity".

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Tory MP says she wears a stab vest to meetings with her constituentsSir David Amess was murdered in October 2021 as he carried out his work as an MP (UK PARLIAMENT/AFP via Getty Imag)

In response, the Prime Minister's official spokesperson said on Tuesday: "Obviously those reports are concerning. The safety of MPs is very important."

He said work went on across Government and Parliament to ensure the safety of MPs.

A UK Parliament spokesperson said: “The ability for Members and Members staff to perform their Parliamentary duties safely both on and off the Estate is fundamental to our democracy.

"We work closely with the Met’s Parliamentary Liaison and Investigations team (PLaIT), and through them, local police forces, who are responsible for the security of MPs and their staff away from the Parliamentary Estate, to ensure MPs are kept as safe as possible and are able to perform their duties.

"We cannot comment on MPs’ security arrangements or advice because we would not wish to compromise the safety of MPs, Parliamentary staff or members of the public, but these are kept under continuous review.”

Ashley Cowburn

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15.07.2024, 17:44 • Investigation