Julia Hartley-Brewer – what a piece of… work*… she is!
Attending the Labour Party Conference on a press pass, this right-wing ratbag invaded the “safe space” area intended for people with disabilities, and others, who need a quiet area for various reasons – they may be experiencing panic attacks due to the noise and crowds at the conference.
The last thing people experiencing such issues need to endure is a grown adult who should know better doing something like this:
— Julia Hartley-Brewer (@JuliaHB1) September 24, 2018
On his Disability News Service site, John Pring told the story of Rebecca (not her real name), who had used the “safe space” to “chill out”, saying “it really helped”.
Then she saw Ms Hartley-Brewer’s mocking video. She said it left her feeling “humiliated and violated”.
After support from Disability Labour, which represents party members with disabilities, she said she was considering reporting Ms Hartley-Brewer’s invasion of the “safe space” as a potential disability hate crime.
[Bear in mind that police must record an incident as a hate crime if that is how the victim perceives it, in line with the Macpherson report.]
The culprit showed absolutely no remorse but merely tweeted that she was being reported to the police for “a joke”.
She got the response she deserved.
I am so pleased you are giving publicity to @johnpringdns, who really deserves it. Without him, we would not know about DWP internal reviews of claimant deaths and a lot more he has covered. https://t.co/Z08T4U7kA4
— Anita Bellows (@AnitaBellows12) September 27, 2018
You invaded a clearly signposted and designated safe space in order to take the piss out of it @JuliaHB1, you don't appear to have had any other purpose in being there and you call that a joke. https://t.co/qWvttw8qv3
— Keith Ordinary Guy #NHSLove (@KeithCameron5) September 29, 2018
And even the few who took it upon themselves to support Ms H-B got short shrift:
If anyone has been taking any note of the news lately, we are having a mental health crisis, yes? It doesn’t take a genius to work out what a room like this is for, let’s not get too hung up over the wording, it doesn’t say ‘Campaign Training’ now, does it? Not funny. Not cool!
— Clare Reeve (@Clare_Jennifer) September 29, 2018
Personally, I am reminded of the way another “safe space” was perverted, at a previous Labour Conference. That was when the Jewish Labour Movement pretended one of its events was such an area, saying that attendees could discuss what they liked (within the bounds of the obvious topic) without being recorded and without fear of being exposed to adverse reactions afterwards.
It was a lie. Then-Momentum vice-chair Jackie Walker was recorded making comments that the JLM chose to portray as anti-Semitic (they weren’t) and she was eventually removed from her position on Momentum’s executive and suspended from the Labour Party. Her case has yet to go before a tribunal of the party’s National Constitutional Committee.
This should have been enough to raise concern that “safe space” designation may be violated and should be monitored, but now a right-wing hack has used it to attack the vulnerable and claim it as humour.
From now on, Labour – and any other party offering such facilities – will need to provide staff to ensure that they are not abused. Or they will have to close them down and deny access to the vulnerable.
That is the upshot of stunts like Ms H-B’s.
And that – the exclusion of the vulnerable – is, I have no doubt, exactly what this vindictive, small-minded harridan wanted to achieve.
*Insert the word of your own choice if you like.
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