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  1. Spotlight on Policy
  2. Elections
26 August 2015updated 27 Aug 2015 6:13am

Is Jeremy Corbyn really proposing “women’s only carriages”?

The frontrunner for the Labour leadership's suggestion has sparked controversy, but what is he really proposing?

By Stephen Bush

Jeremy Corbyn has mooted the introduction of women-only carriages at night in response to rising reports of sexual harrassment and assault on public transport. 

“Some women have raised with me that a solution to the rise in assault and harassment on public transport could be to introduce women only carriages,” the Labour leadership frontrunner said, “My intention would be to make public transport safer for everyone from the train platform, to the bus stop to on the mode of transport itself. However, I would consult with women and open it up to hear their views on whether women-only carriages would be welcome – and also if piloting this at times and modes of transport where harassment is reported most frequently would be of interest.”

But the suggestion has recieved a mixed response. The broadcaster Petrie Hosken described it as a “14th century” solution. Corbyn’s team stressed that the proposal was for a consultation, not a concrete policy. 

The idea has been a periodic favourite within the Department of Transport; Claire Perry, the rail minister, floated it in 2014, but the plan was not carried forward.

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