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Upskirting law to be passed soon, says Theresa May

18 June 2018
Upskirting law to be passed soon, says Theresa May

A plan by the United Kingdom parliament to ban taking photos up women's skirts without their permission was blocked at the last minute by one Conservative lawmaker who refused to support the law.

Martin said she was "extremely upset and disappointed" and that she spoke to Chope after his objection and he agreed to meet with her to learn more about the bill.

"What we're going to do on this upskirting issue is put in government time and make sure that legislation is there on the statute book".

Gina Martin, 26, had worked tirelessly to make upskirting a crime and had won the support of all three major political parties.

British Prime Minister Theresa May supported the bill and was "disappointed" in Sir Chope's actions blocking the upskirting bill as the only lawmaker objecting to it advancing.

But Justice Minister, Lucy Frazer said she was confident Sir Christopher's actions would not scupper the Bill in the long term, although the Ministry of Justice stopped short of setting a time frame on when it would become law.

The U.K. government had endorsed the legislation earlier Friday to ban "upskirting" photos, but the process was stalled by one Conservative lawmaker.

Culture Minister Margot James said Sir Christopher had brought the Tories into disrepute, while the Prime Minister expressed her "disappointment" at his move.

Gina Martin campaigned for the law to further protect women after she was the victim of upskirting last year
Gina Martin campaigned for the law to further protect women after she was the victim of upskirting last year

"This behaviour is a ugly invasion of privacy which leaves victims feeling degraded and distressed", said Frazer announcing the government's backing.

Liberal Democrat MP Wera Hobhouse, who brought the private member's bill to Parliament, also criticised the "out-of-touch Tory" for "sabotaging" it.

Speaking to his local paper, the Bournemouth Echo, Sir Christopher Chope said he was objecting to parliamentary procedure rather than the law itself. Lorna Rees, who lives in Sir Christopher's constituency of Christchurch in Dorset, vented her anger at him by draping home-made knicker bunting outside his door (pictured, right). "We knew this was a risk - but I now stand with powerful, passionate women and men behind me".

The UK is not the only country to see a concerted campaign on upskirting.

She has asked for her bill to return to the House on 6 July.

"Don't underestimate just how furious many Tory MPs are about this", tweeted Paul Masterton, a new MP who is 39 years Sir Christopher's junior.

Currently, victims in England and Wales are forced to seek prosecution through other legal avenues, such as outraging public decency or harassment.