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Speaker’s Statement

Volume 721: debated on Tuesday 1 November 2022

I would like to make a short statement about the outcome of the inquiry into events during the Division on Wednesday 19 October. At my instruction officials interviewed or took statements from over 40 Members and officials who were there. The report of their investigation will be published shortly and copies made available in the Vote Office. The key findings are as follows.

The atmosphere was tense and Members were raising their voices to make themselves heard, but there is no evidence of any bullying or undue influence placed on other Members. The crowding made it hard to see what was really taking place. While some Members thought that physical contact was being used to force a Member into the Lobby, the Member concerned has said very clearly that this did not happen. Those with the clearest views of the incident have confirmed this. Several Members took photos during the Division, some of which were posted on social media. I would like to remind Members that taking photos during proceedings is prohibited.

It is important that we treat each other with respect. I take allegations of bullying extremely seriously, and will take swift action wherever necessary to address any improper behaviour in the Chamber or in the Lobbies.