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Labour official 'warned about reporting rape claim'

Bex Bailey said she was raped at a party event and advised not to report it.

Labour activist Bex Bailey said she was raped at a party event in 2011
Labour activist Bex Bailey said she was raped at a party event in 2011 Bex Bailey/Twitter

A prominent Labour activist has said she was raped at a party event in 2011 and was advised by a senior party official not to report it as 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.

She told BBC Radio Four's PM programme 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, she 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.

"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."

Ms Bailey said she "wasn't given good advice", she "wasn't given a procedure to follow" when she asked for it, and she added: "I don't think I was even given a cup of tea at the time."

Ed Miliband, who was Labour leader at the time of the alleged rape, praised Ms Bailey for speaking out.

The Labour Party has recommended the police investigate the allegation, releasing the following statement:

The Labour Party takes these allegations extremely seriously. It takes great courage for victims of rape to come forward - and all support must and will be made available to them. We would strongly recommend that the police investigate the allegations of criminal actions that Bex Bailey has made. Labour will also launch an independent investigation into claims that a party employee acted improperly over these 2011 allegations.
Labour party spokesperson

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