New law to ban 'upskirting' blocked by one Tory MP

What is upskirting and what is the new law against it after Gina Martin campaign

What is upskirting and what is the new law against it after Gina Martin campaign

Dawn Butler, the Labour party spokeswoman for women and equalities, said: "What possible reason could there be to block a law that supports women and girls?" However the same year, a Texas court upheld its citizens' constitutional right to take upskirt photos, referencing the right to freedom of speech.

Martin was upskirted in 2017, but was unable to prosecute after police deemed the image not obscene enough because she was wearing underwear.

She said making upskirting a specific offence would send a clear message that perpetrators will be punished.

Justice Minister Lucy Frazer called upskirting "a ugly invasion of privacy which leaves victims feeling degraded and distressed".

On Friday, Liberal Democrat Wera Hobhouse tabled a private member's bill that would make upskirting a criminal offence punishable by up to two years in prison.

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Sir Christopher said: "The government has been hijacking time that is rightfully that of backbenchers".

So Martin made a decision to start a campaign to make the practice a criminal offense.

The initiative was stopped by a single Conservative Party legislator who objected when the bill was put forward in the House of Commons.

He said: "The Government supported today's Bill on "up-skirting".

It means the Bill will have to return for another Friday Private Members Bill session, on July 6, if it is to have any hope of becoming law in this Parliamentary term.

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"This behaviour is a disgusting invasion of privacy which leaves victims feeling degraded and distressed", said Justice Minister Lucy Frazer in the statement announcing the government's backing.

Sir Christopher has yet to speak out about his intervention, but upskirting victim Gina Martin - who started the campaign for the new law - said he told her he objected "on principle" because it "wasn't debated". "We knew this was a risk - but I now stand with powerful, passionate women and men behind me".

Richard Burgon MP, who backed the Bill, wrote on Twitter: "Disgusted to see that Tory MP Christopher Chope blocked the Upskirting Bill in Parliament today".

The government had endorsed the legislation earlier Friday. It has become more common in recent years with the adoption of smartphones.

A United Kingdom campaign to criminalize upskirting, the practice of filming up someone's clothing to see their genitals or underwear, looks set to succeed after the government announced its support for the new law Friday.

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