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Labour activist 'warned' pursuing rape claim would hurt her career

Labour activist Bex Bailey has said she was raped at a party event in 2011
Shaun Connolly, Press Association

A PROMINENT Labour activist has said she was raped at a party event in 2011 and felt discouraged to report it because it could have damaged her career.

Bex Bailey (25), a former member of the party's National Executive Committee, has called for an independent agency to be set up to deal with such issues.

Ms Bailey, who was 19 at the time of the Labour Party gathering, told BBC Radio Four's PM programme she did not get the support she needed when she reported the incident to a senior official two years later.

She said the Labour official warned her taking the matter further could be bad for her career.

Ms Bailey said the attack was not carried out by an MP, but by an individual more senior to her.

Asked if she had gone to the police, Ms Bailey said: "No, I didn't, for all the reasons that I think a lot of women don't report this".

"I was scared, I felt ashamed, I know that the Labour Party, like any family, loves a good gossip and I didn't want people to know, and I also was worried that I wouldn't be believed if I did. So, no I didn't," she said.

"It took me a while to summon up the courage to tell anyone in the party. But, when I did, I told a senior member of staff, who told me, it was suggested to me that I not report it.

"I was told that if I did it might damage me, and that might be their genuine view, it might be that that was the case, in which case that shows that we have a serious problem in politics with this issue anyway."

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