Wandsworth Labour was deeply saddened by the tragic death of Sarah Everard and by the many stories of violence and intimidation that so many other women have experienced, and continue to experience every day.
Some of our members went to Clapham Common, in a personal capacity, to privately pay our respects to Sarah on Saturday. We saw a sombre, respectful event with hundreds of peaceful people, many bringing flowers. Some of us later witnessed the shocking, disproportionate and unacceptable response by the Met Police.
We believe that our communities can only prosper when every member is treated fairly and respectfully by the institutions of the state: the police, the education system, the health and social care system and the judicial system. People in authority must always look at all of their practices and listen to women, people of colour, people with disabilities and of all races, faiths and sexualities, when concerns are raised.
In Wandsworth, this could start with teaching our children what healthy relationships look like and how men should behave towards women.
We need to ensure every child has the food, housing and educational opportunities they need to make the best possible start in life, and every one of our residents should have a safe home, sufficient income for a dignified life and the health and social care they need. Alongside this, we must all respect each other – and treat each other with respect.