Nicky Morgan lambasts Corbyn's women-only carriages suggestion

Posted On: 
26th August 2015

A proposal by Jeremy Corbyn to implement women-only train carriages is not “the right way to go,” according to the Government spokesperson for women, Nicky Morgan.

The Labour leadership hopeful floated the idea that some train and tube carriages could become gender segregated after 10pm to help address the growing issue of sexual harassment in public places.

He said he would “consult with women and open it up to hear their views on whether women-only carriages would be welcome”.

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But Education Secretary and Women’s Minister Ms Morgan poured cold water over the debate, saying she was “very uncomfortable with the idea”.

“Women should feel safe and be free from harassment on public transport. [This idea] seems to say 'let’s segregate people' rather than tackling the issue. And so I don’t think this is the right way to go,” she told Sky News.

She raised questions over how the move would be policed, and suggested it could leave women feeling “more vulnerable”.

“Frankly I actually feel safer sitting near a guard. What, the guards are going to be sitting in the women-only carriages, are they? I just don’t think this has been thought through," she argued.

Tory MP and Health Select Committee Chair Sarah Wollaston also hit out at the suggestion.

"Segregating women on public transport doesn't protect anyone, it just normalises unacceptable attitudes," she tweeted.

Last year, Transport Minister Claire Perry suggested consideration of the idea - which exists in countries such as Japan and Brazil - could be on the table.

'UNACCEPTABLE'

Outlining his policies against street harassment, Mr Corbyn said: "It is simply unacceptable that many women and girls adapt their daily lives in order to avoid being harassed on the street, public transport and in other public places from the park to the supermarket.”

Among his proposals, Mr Corbyn also said he would set up a 24-hour police hotline which would be staffed by women and dedicated to receiving reports of harassment and assault.