Labour MP says he was ‘regularly touched up’ by older male colleagues after first entering the House of Commons in 2001
- Chris Bryant told LBC Radio he was ‘shocked’ after being ‘touched up’ in 2001
- He said he could think of four MPs who were ‘not out’ who did this to him
- Claims come as MPs face increasing pressure to clean up Westminster politics
A Labour MP says he was ‘regularly touched up’ by older colleagues when he first joined parliament.
Chris Bryant told LBC Radio he was ‘shocked’ after entering the House of Commons in 2001 and facing the advances of senior politicians.
Mr Bryant said he could think of four MPs, who were ‘not out’, who did this to him since becoming a Member of Parliament.
He added: ‘I never felt I was able to report it because you end up being part of the story, and that’s the last thing you want. And I think a lot of women have been through that.’
Mr Bryant also said: ‘I was shocked at the time… none of them are out, of course. I think that now if anybody would do that I would be absolutely robust. I would call the person out immediately and I would make a complaint.’
Chris Bryant said he could think of four MPs, who were ‘not out’, who did this to him since becoming a Member of Parliament
His claims come as MPs face increasing pressure to clean up Westminster politics amid a wave of sordid claims about booze-fuelled behaviour that has left Parliament’s reputation in the gutter.
Among the claims are a minister accused of having ‘noisy sex’ in his parliamentary office, a Tory MP who sent a ‘d**k pic’ to a female colleague and another who has been given repeated warnings for his use of prostitutes.
Another MP is also said to have drunkenly licked men’s faces which cavorting in one of Parliament’s many bars.
Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle has called for ‘radical’ reform to working practices, including ending the direct employment of aides by MPs, to make it easier for them to make complaints without fear of losing their jobs.
His bid for change was echoed by Andrea Leadsom, the former leader of the Commons, who in 2018 spearheaded the creation of the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme (ICGS), which looks into claims of bullying and sexual harassment.
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