The Parlimag Poll: MEP personal safety
With an increasing number of policymakers expressing real concerns over their personal safety, both online and in their day-to-day lives, The Parliament Magazine conducted a survey of MEPs and the dangers that they face. The responses we received exposed not only an alarming reality but also a stark contrast between the experiences of male and female parliamentarians.
FEAR FOR PERSONAL SAFETY
Although the majority of MEPs (58%) had not feared for their safety since becoming an MEP, the remainder had. This fear was more prevalent among female MEPs, with 50% fearing for their safety, compared to 33% among males.
A staggering 33% of MEPs have received a death threat. The number of female MEPs receiving such threats was significantly higher at 39%.
THREATS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE
Of the MEPs polled, 23% had received a threat of sexual violence. Disturbingly, female MEPs were NINE times more likely to have received such a threat (44% versus 5% among male MEPs).
Over a third of MEPs (36%) have contacted the police following a threat to them, their staff, or family. The rate was higher for female MEPs (39% versus 30% for male MEPs).
Although the vast majority of MEPs (87%) have not had to seek police protection because of threats, just over one in ten have had to seek such protection. Again, this is higher among female MEPs (17%) than among males (10%).
The research was collected from among 46 MEPS (54% male and 46% female) between the 23 February and 5 March.