I wanted to express my dismay and disgust at the continued attacks our MP, Siobhan Baillie, has faced in recent weeks.
From excrement being left outside her constituency office, to the abusive messages she was sent while on maternity leave through to the recent graffiti attack on her office.
When an MP is attacked like this, it’s not just a deplorable and cowardly attack on an individual or on the MP’s staff, all of whom have a right to work in a place free from fear or harassment. It’s an attack on the very foundations of democracy and the tens of thousands of people who voted for her as our MP.
The moment we lose sight of this is the moment we let the fragile foundations of our democracy crumble further still. Now more than ever these foundations need defending. Harassment, violence, and property damage have no place in our democratic process. We need to be clear and united on this point.
I understand people’s anger at this current government. But the way to respond to that is through political engagement that has a meaningful impact on our communities. Community organising, protest, and, essentially, voting. This is how we take a stand. Not through cowardly attacks on our political representatives.
With this in mind, I hope three things to be true. Firstly, I hope dearly that this finds Siobhan and her staff well. Secondly, people reading this understand the fragile nature of our democracy and how now more than ever we all need to be protecting it. Thirdly, I hope through greater political engagement and community mobilisation we will remove Siobhan and this Conservative government from office at the next election and, regardless of the result, whoever is our MP is treated with the respect the position deserves.
Cllr Steve Hynd
Green Party District Councillor for The Stanley’s and Deputy Leader of the Green Group on Stroud District Council.