Sunday 25 August 2019

Jeremy Corbyn says those accused of abuse 'need support too'

Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy Corbyn Newsdesk Newsdesk

Jeremy Corbyn has said those accused of abuse must be supported through an investigation as well as the alleged victim, in the wake of Carl Sargeant's death.

The father-of-two died four days after being suspended from the Labour party and sacked as Welsh Government minister for communities and children over allegations of "unwanted attention, inappropriate touching or groping", which he was contesting.

The 49 year old is believed to have taken his own life four days after being removed from his role and his death came as allegations of sexual impropriety engulfed Westminster.

Mr Corbyn was asked by a Labour member at a party event in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, to commit to an independent complaints procedure for activists as well as MPs and their staff.

The Labour leader replied: "What I just say is this, we are a very large party, a very large organisation, we will not tolerate in any form whatsoever any kind of racism, sexism, homophobia or abuse of anybody."

He went on: "When somebody is accused and there is evidence that there is something that should be investigated, it will be investigated, there is a confidential hotline at our head office, which is staffed by experienced staff who are able to deal with it exactly the same as there are with public representatives of our party.

"But also, when somebody has been accused of something they should be supported because it's a hard thing for them to cope with, just as much as the victim should also be supported.

"And I'm trying to make sure that we deal with accusations in a timely but fair and appropriate manner so that we do get through it.

"But it's also about ensuring that the culture of our party is one that is welcoming and inclusive."

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