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Stay Safe Out There

November 15, 2019 9:40 AM
By Sal Brinton, President, Liberal Democrats

Simon Bishop leafletsThank you for everything that you and your teams are doing in this General Election. Over 10 million leaflets have already been sent to voters up and down the country, from Shetland to St. Ives.

However, I wanted to get in touch regarding something less positive. Sadly we have seen a rise of abuse against candidates and political party activists and we all need to make sure we are keeping safe.

Please, can you to forward this email to your teams to make sure they are taking all the steps they can to stay safe, especially when out door knocking in the dark.

Throughout the election, there will be huge pressures on us as campaigners. However, whatever you are working on, your number one priority must be your personal safety and that of your team.

Here are some quick tips for keeping safe during the election:

  • Deliver leaflets or knock on doors in pairs - Even for experienced campaigners, door knocking after dark is harder than in May.
  • Keep track of where your group will be going, and let someone else know when you're expected back - Turn on location tracker in Whatsapp or in Google Maps so your group can keep track of each other.
  • Share mobile numbers to keep in touch - Make sure you have everyone's number, and having a canvassing Whatsapp group can be helpful.
  • Never go into a stranger's home - The more people that can see you, the safer you will be. It may be cold but stay outside when canvassing.

Please report any threats you receive while out canvassing to the Police and to our Head of Standards, Natalia Villazan (natalia.villazan@libdems.org.uk). These include any whether verbal threats in person or by phone, by email or letter or through any social media platforms.

Also, please do not post about any threats received on social media. This increases the risks to candidates as it could trigger further threats or action by someone who reads it. Keep a screenshot and report it, and block any abusive accounts.

Additionally, candidates need to tell their agents if they receive any type of threat so they can get the right support. The Party is aware of what is happening across the country, is monitoring risk levels and will put additional steps in place where necessary.

The Police and the Electoral Commission have produced a pack for candidates, offering further guidance. This can be found here: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/sites/default/files/pdf_file/Joint-Guidance-for-Candidates-in-Elections.pd

Thank you for all that you doing. Let's stay safe and get as many Lib Dem MPs as possible elected to Parliament.

Best wishes,

Sal