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Personal Statement

Volume 737: debated on Monday 4 September 2023

6.45 pm

With your permission, Mr Deputy Speaker, I wish to make a personal statement regarding an exchange that occurred on 13 and 14 September 2022 between myself and the then Chief Whip, my right hon. Friend the Member for Aldridge-Brownhills (Wendy Morton). During this exchange I used intemperate and inappropriate language, which I regret and I apologised for shortly after. My behaviour led to a complaint. The complaint was initially dismissed by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards. However, this decision was appealed and subsequently reversed by the Independent Expert Panel.

I accept the decision that my conduct constituted a breach of the bullying and harassment policy, and have since reflected on my behaviour. I reiterate my apology made to the complainant following the breach. I apologise to them again now, and I apologise to the House fully and unreservedly. I will do my utmost to ensure this does not happen again.