A British lawmaker proposed a 6 p.m. curfew for men after a London woman was murdered while walking home at night — in a case that has rocked the country and sparked an intense debate about women’s safety.
Baroness Jenny Jones, a Green Party member of the House of Lords, made the extreme suggestion Wednesday during a debate on the Domestic Abuse Bill.
“In the week that Sarah Everard was abducted, and we suppose killed because remains have been found in a woodland in Kent, I would argue that at the next opportunity for any bill that’s appropriate I might actually put in an amendment to create a curfew for men on the streets after 6 p.m., which I feel would make women a lot safer and discrimination of all kinds would be lessened,” Jones said, according to the Independent.
But Jones was quickly forced to explain that her proposal was “not an entirely serious suggestion” and not party policy after a deluge of criticism from constituents and fellow lawmakers alike.
“OMG the world is going mad. The greens are thinking about a curfew for men after 6pm at night – I’ve heard it all now,” Conservative leader Susan Hall tweeted Thursday.
In an interview with Sky News on Friday, Jones clarified she was making a point about the victim-blaming that women often face.
“I was just trying to highlight that when the police victim blame by asking women to stay home, we don’t react. We just think it’s normal,” the lawmaker said.
“That in fact nobody makes a fuss when, for example, the police suggest women stay home. But when I suggest it, men are up in arms.”
Everard, 33, vanished while walking home from a friend’s house in Clapham, south London, last week.
On Tuesday, London Police Officer Wayne Couzens — whose duties include protecting the royal family — was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping, suspicion of murder and indecent exposure in connection with the case.
A day later, human remains believed to be Everard’s were discovered in a wooded area near Ashford, Kent.
The innocent woman’s death triggered an outpouring of anger over violence against women in the UK.
Meanwhile, Jones said she welcomes the scrutiny over her “proposal,” and hopes it leads to a meaningful discussion about gender roles and public safety.
“Since my comments about a curfew for men to keep women safe, I’ve had a deluge of misogynistic emails and tweets. Which rather proves my point about the problem being with men,” the lawmaker tweeted Thursday.