Chris Killick to stand down as MP candidate for Hartlepool

Chris Killick to stand down as MP candidate for Hartlepool

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Chloe Harvey started this petition to UK Parliament

An open letter to Mr. Chris Killick, Independent Candidate for the MP of Hartlepool

Dear Mr. Chris Killick,

You are clearly an ambitious man who has moved to Hartlepool from north-west London in the hope of gaining the vote as our local MP. Whilst it is obvious that political ambition rules your mind, whether you can feel remorse in your heart is far less obvious. As a lifelong resident of Hartlepool and - more importantly - as a woman, I find this deeply concerning. I am writing this open letter to you in the hope that you have a change of heart and step down from the election for Hartlepool's future MP on 6th May 2021. 

Two weeks ago, local and national news organisations published stories that confirm your status as a convicted sex offender. In 2015, you were accused of the shocking crime of drug-facilitated sexual assault against a woman in a vulnerable state. The original charges were dropped due to a lack of evidence, an unsurprising fact that echoes the harsh reality of coming forward as a victim of sexual assault in the UK.

After a frustrating five-year court process for the victim, you were finally sentenced for voyeurism last year. Why? You also recorded a 62-second video of this woman naked and asleep – without her consent and for your own “sexual gratification.”

Your actions were illegal, your actions stripped a woman of her autonomy, and the victim has stated that your actions “ruined [her] life.” Yet, under the Electoral Commission, your actions do not disqualify you from seeking election here in Hartlepool.

Unfortunately, I am in no position to determine what does and does not qualify a person to run as MP. If that decision was up to me, you would not be running today. However, I am in a position to put the following question to you. After what you have done, how could you believe that you’re the right person to represent Hartlepool in Parliament?

In your correspondence with the press, you say that you decided not to tell the electorate about your convictions. You confess that you originally planned to tell voters but you “got a bit frightened.” I don’t think you really know what it means to be afraid. We’re only four months into 2021 and already countless headlines have proven that, for those who identify as women, the UK is still an unequal and unsafe country. 86% of women have experienced sexual harassment in public spaces and 20% of women have experienced sexual assault since the age of 16. Those statistics are the real fear.

I cannot imagine the grief, anger, and distress I would feel if I learned that my abuser was standing for a position of power. I am shocked that you believe that you have the right to speak on the behalf of nearly 300,000 people, including the most vulnerable members of our community.

In the week since this news broke, it has been overwhelming to see amazing members of Hartlepool already speaking out against your nomination. I have truly felt a sense of pride for the women of my town. Sarah Gate has created a petition to change the law in light of your campaign. If successful, sex offenders like you would no longer be able to represent the public as National Ministers for Parliament and Local Government Councillors. Sarah writes “It’s time we – women of Hartlepool and beyond – had our say. Sex offenders do not speak for us.” The petition has received over 1000 signatures in less than 48 hours.

I am writing this letter to add my voice to the stand against your campaign, I am also writing in solidarity with the women of Hartlepool and victims of sexual abuse. Your past actions openly disrespected morality, the law, and most of all, another human being. By failing to disclose your conviction to those who nominated you, you have also failed to demonstrate any remorse for your actions. You've tried to sweep things under the rug which is unacceptable. The residents that identify as women in Hartlepool should not and will not tolerate your campaign to run as our MP.  

Sarah Gate has already created a petition in the hopes of changing the law. I am also asking you to do what is right and step down whether or not this law is changed. 

Sincerely,

Chloe Harvey 

CLICK HERE to sign Sarah Gate’s petition 

 

 

References


Anderson, K., 2021. Convicted sex offender explains why he's standing to be Hartlepool MP. [online] TeessideLive. Available at: <https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/hartlepool-mp-candidate-revealed-convicted-20429765>

BBC News. 2021. Hartlepool by-election: Voyeur Christopher Killick stands. [online] Available at: <https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tees-56846307> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

BBC News. 2021. Voyeur sentenced after woman's five-year campaign. [online] Available at: <https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-54027088> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

BBC News. 2021. Voyeur sentenced after woman's five-year campaign. [online] Available at: <https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-54027088> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

Change.org. 2021. Change the law to stop sex offenders becoming public office candidates (E​.​G MPs). [online] Available at: <https://www.change.org/p/uk-government-change-the-law-to-stop-sex-offenders-becoming-mps?use_react=false> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

Hartlepoolmail.co.uk. 2021. Why independent Hartlepool by-election candidate would legalise certain drugs. [online] Available at: <https://www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk/news/politics/why-hartlepool-by-election-candidate-christopher-killick-would-legalise-certain-drugs-3206046> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

inews.co.uk. 2021. Hartlepool campaigners launch petition after a convicted sex offender stands for election. [online] Available at: <https://inews.co.uk/news/uk/christopher-killick-hartlepool-campaigners-launch-petition-after-convicted-sex-offender-stands-for-election-975875> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

Publications.parliament.uk. 2021. The Code of Conduct - The Code of Conduct - House of Commons. [online] Available at: <https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201719/cmcode/1474/147401.htm> [Accessed 30 April 2021].

Rapecrisis.org.uk. 2021. Statistics about sexual violence. [online] Available at: <https://rapecrisis.org.uk/get-informed/about-sexual-violence/statistics-sexual-violence/> [Accessed 30 April 2021].


 

 

 

 

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