Sunday 19 May 2024
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Councillor speaks out about the abuse he and others have to face in the job

Councillor Richard MacRae received so much hate and abuse from one person that they were jailed for three years.


Cllr Richard MacRae Independent Stapleford North said:

‘I used to be a doorman. I was a bouncer. In some of the roughest places around.

‘Now we’ve had people pull out knuckle dusters. I’ve had been threatened to be shot. I’ve had people pull machetes out and all that lot.

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‘That’s never personal because they just don’t know you. But the. The abuse you get being a councillor. I’d say it’s worse [ councillor abuse ].

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Richard has received abuse so hate-filled that in 2021, one of the perpetrators was jailed for three years.

‘There was a lady that used to live around here in Stapleford that was quite abusive online. I ended up having to block her over 30 times on Facebook alone.’

Research carried out by the local government association found more than four fifths of councillors say they’ve received some form of abuse or harassment. That’s up 10% on the year before. With an upcoming election, people are worried about increasing levels of abuse. In 2015, extra police protection was made available for MPs.


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