PACE President Liliane Maury Pasquier has reacted to the publication of two independent inquiries into bullying and harassment in the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
“Like others, I am deeply disappointed to learn what has been happening in some parts of the UK Parliament. This kind of behaviour is unacceptable anywhere – but in the corridors of power, among those who represent and aspire to lead the nation, it is especially shocking.
Sadly, it is all too common: in a study we carried out last year covering European parliaments, over 40 per cent of parliamentary staff said they had been sexually harassed at work.
For that reason, in October last year – together with the Inter-Parliamentary Union – we launched the #NotInMyParliament initiative. Since then, I am proud to say that hundreds of parliamentarians, and others working with them, have pledged to do all they can to end sexual harassment, abuse and violence against women in parliaments.
I commend the Westminster authorities for setting up these inquiries and urge them to take strong action to end this toxic culture – including following up on the recommendations made in these two reports.
Everybody is entitled to dignity and respect wherever they work. I encourage all at Westminster – and in other parliaments across Europe – to take the steps necessary to bring about an end to degrading or abusive behaviour, and to make our pledge a daily reality: #NotInMyParliament.”