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£31m package unveiled to increase security for MPs

MPs will have a dedicated police contact for safety issues as part of a £31m package to boost security measures for elected politicians.

Home Secretary James Cleverley said no MP should have to accept threats as “part of the job”, following fears some have been targeted by demonstrators demanding an end to fighting in Gaza.

Pro-Palestinian protesters gathered outside the home of Tory backbencher Tobias Ellwood earlier this month – with police warning his family to “stay away” as arriving could “antagonise” the situation.

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Protesters descend on MP’s home

It also comes after the House of Commons Speaker broke with precedent last week out of concern for MP safety during a vote related to the war in the Middle East.

Announcing the new funding, Mr Cleverly said: “The government will take every possible step to safeguard the people, processes and institutions upon which our democracy relies.

“I take the safety and security of all members of the House with the utmost seriousness.

“None of us should have to accept that enduring hate crimes, harassment, or threats is part of the job.

“I will continue to work closely with my police counterparts to provide elected representatives with the support they need.”

Read more:
‘Words matter’ – Lee Anderson, heightened tension and MPs’ safety
From bodyguards to death threats – the real impact of chaos in the Commons

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What happened in the House of Commons?

The Home Office said the latest funding package will provide increased security provisions for MPs and significantly expand the support given under current policing arrangements for politicians.

The investment will be used to enhance police capabilities, increase private sector security provisions for those facing a higher risk and to expand cyber security advice to locally elected representatives.

It will also ensure all elected representatives and candidates have a dedicated. named police contact to liaise with on security matters, officials said.

Mr Cleverly will hold a roundtable with the National Police Chiefs’ Council on Wednesday to discuss what more can be done to improve the safety of MPs.

The announcement includes a communities fund to support additional police patrols each week in England and Wales to help deal with “increased community tensions”.

In the past eight years, two serving MPs – Labour’s Jo Cox and Conservative Sir David Amess – have been murdered.

On Tuesday, Mr Sunak rejected a suggestion that MPs should be able to speak and vote from their constituencies because of concerns about security at Westminster.

Downing Street said the prime minister believed it was “really important that we maintain parliament as a place for free debate and expression of views”.

Sky News Source