Exclusive: Tories create ‘support group’ following porn MP scandal

A ‘support group’ is being set up for Tory MPs after one of their colleagues quit after he was caught watching pornography in the Commons.

The party’s chief whip has written to Tory MPs offering help following “serious issues” raised in parliament.

In an email, seen by HuffPost UK, Chris Heaton-Harris said they needed to do more to “improve the culture” at Westminster.

It comes after a number of female Tory MPs raised serious concerns about misogyny and sexism within their own party.

Heaton-Harris said he had asked MPs Amanda Solloway and Rebecca Harris to consider how they could “better respond to any welfare concerns”.

He also revealed that Foreign Secretary Amanda Milling had been asked to set up a “support group” for her colleagues.

The group will be made up of a “cross section of colleagues” dedicated to providing support and advice on a range of issues, he said.

Neil Parish has resigned after admitting watching porn in the Commons.

Matt Cardy via Getty Images

The intervention comes just days after Tory Neil Parish resigned as MP after admitting to watching pornography twice in the Commons.

Two female colleagues claimed to have seen him watching adult content on his phone as he sat near them.

The concerns were raised in a heated meeting in which a series of female MPs complained to whips about sexism and misogyny within the party.

The scandal prompted senior Tory MP Caroline Nokes to say her party was institutionally sexist and there was a culture of “male right”.

Heaton-Harris said the Tories had ‘some of the best and most dedicated MPs’, but added: ‘It has become clear that we need to do more to improve the culture in which we work and ensure that Parliament be a place of welcome for everyone.”

The Chief Whip then encouraged MPs to ‘reach out’ and said if anyone raised concerns it would be kept ‘private and confidential’.

“Following serious questions that have been raised in Parliament, I wanted to explain how the office of the whips is there to help and how we can provide support to our colleagues.

– Chris Heaton-Harris

Five years after the so-called ‘pestminster’ scandal, Parliament has once again been engulfed in allegations of misogyny, bullying and sordidness.

A senior MP has been accused of repeatedly licking the faces of male researchers in parliamentary bars.

It was also alleged that a Tory MP was given an explicit photograph, known as a ‘dick photo’, by a male colleague and another MP was repeatedly warned about her use of prostitutes.

The allegations have led to calls for a major overhaul of parliamentary culture.

This led the Speaker of the House of Commons, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, to call for a review of current working practices.

Leave a Comment