Labour Councillor Suspended From Party For 'Shirt Lifting Gender Bender' Attack

Councillor Suspended For 'Shirt Lifting Gender Bender' Attack

A local councillor has been issued a warning by police and suspended from the Labour Party after branding a fellow councillor a "shirt lifting gender bender".

District councillor Mike Harrison made the comment on his Facebook page, amid an ongoing row over the council's decision to declare its support the government's proposals for same-sex marriage.

Independent councillor Ian Driver, who was the target of the abuse, said that if Harrison had "any honour" he would quit the council.

"There is no place in this council for misogyny and homophobia and he is not wanted," he said.

Harrison told the Thanet Gazette on Friday: "I probably did say them things and somebody deleted it, that is why I thought I was hacked, but as far as I am concerned I have not been found guilty of anything."

Cllr Clive Hart, the Labour Group Leader on the council, said on Wednesday that Harrison would be suspended from the party.

"Following a thorough internal investigation of recent events leading to him receiving a letter of advice from the police, Cllr Mike Harrison has been suspended from Thanet Labour Group for one calendar month," he said.

The incident comes just days after another member of Thanet council, Tory Ken Gregory, was cautioned by police after leaving a message on a bisexual member of the council's answer phone saying: "With a bit of luck you'll get Aids".

Gregory was subsequently suspended from the Conservative Party for his comments.

In April the local MP, Conservative Roger Gale, caused controversy when he described the government's plans to introduce gay marriage as "almost Stalinist in its political correctness".

"Will Shakespeare, Milton and the Holy Bible be rewritten also?" he asked.


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