Shadow minister resigns amid intimidation claims at ex-Hartlepool MP Mike Hill's harassment tribunal
A shadow minister has quit after being accused of trying to intimidate a colleague seeking to assist a Parliamentary worker who raised allegations of sexual harassment against a former Labour MP.
Kate Hollern has left her role on Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer’s frontbench after the allegations were made during an employment tribunal against Mike Hill.
The Parliamentary worker accuses Mr Hill, the former Hartlepool MP, of carrying out a campaign of sexual harassment and bullying against her over a 16-month period.
Tory MP Andrew Bridgen told the Central London Employment Tribunal on Wednesday that Ms Hollern made “malicious” remarks designed to “scare” him away from helping the woman.
Labour confirmed on Thursday that Ms Hollern, the MP for Blackburn, had resigned as shadow minister for local government but did not comment further.
Mr Bridgen told the tribunal that the woman, known only as Ms A, had confided in him that she was allegedly being “sexually harassed and sexually assaulted”.
In a written statement, he said he was approached by Ms Hollern in the House of Commons’ terrace, who asked him for a private word away from other MPs.
He wrote that Ms Hollern told him: “Everyone is saying in the Labour Party that you are having an affair with (Ms A) and if I were you I would keep away from her because you have a wife and baby and you would not want to lose them if it got in the papers.”
He said he responded that “this is rubbish” and he said he regarded the remarks as “malicious and designed to scare me away from offering Ms A any help or support”.
He was suspended from the Labour Party in September 2019 over the allegations before he was reinstated in October of that year to fight the general election.
Mr Hill resigned from his seat in March this year, triggering a by-election that saw his seat taken by the Conservatives last week after Jill Mortimer romped to victory with a near 7,000 majority.