Abuse and intimidation of our elected representatives - including violence towards them - is one of the biggest threats to our democracy in the UK.
We have launched the Jo Cox Civility Commission to find practical recommendations to address this complex problem. With Baroness Gabrielle Bertin and Lord Vernon Coaker as co-chairs, the Commission will gather proposed solutions to the issue from participants across a wide range of sectors.
We urgently need this Commission.
- In the last seven years, two MPs - Jo Cox and Sir David Amess - were murdered as they met their constituents.
- MPs are regularly reporting death threats and threats of serious sexual violence to the police.
- 88% of local councillors had experienced abuse and intimidation.
We have already seen politicians in the UK stepping down due to abuse and intimidation and it is becoming a barrier to those considering running for election. It has implications for the representation we see in UK politics, as female politicians and those from minority ethnic backgrounds receive disproportionate levels of abuse. Without urgent action, we risk going backwards on this issue.
At The Jo Cox Foundation, we are committed to finding solutions to abuse and intimidation in politics. Through the Jo Cox Civility Commission we will produce recommendations and campaign for their adoption. We hope to announce the recommendations by the end of 2023.
We need your support.
The Jo Cox Foundation is a small charity and we need to raise £65,000 to fund the first phase of the Commission. Anything you can give will make a huge difference - you can make a one-off donation or join us as a Friend of the Foundation with a monthly donation. Make sure you sign up to our mailing list to receive updates on the Commission and see the impact your donation has made.
Send in your submission
The reasons behind this growing problem are complex and implementing solutions will require concerted action across different sectors - including, but not limited to, social media firms, political parties, government and police forces. If you have expertise on this issue - whether through your work or lived experience - please complete our call for submissions online form to help us gather a range of perspectives and ideas.
Complete the call for submissions form
Alternatively, you can download the form and send your submission via email to [email protected]. There are two versions: the general form and a specific form for elected politicians (current or former) or their staffers.
If you work for an organisation that would like to arrange a meeting to discuss your ideas, please email us.
Spread the word
If you’re passionate about protecting democracy, please share news of the Commission with people you know to help us raise vital donations.
“In 2016, many of us hoped that the tragedy of Jo’s murder would be a wake-up call and abuse and intimidation in public life would be taken seriously and addressed.
Almost seven years on, the problem appears to be worsening. MPs and local councillors alike frequently recount horrific threats and Sir David Amess’ tragic murder in 2021 highlights the ongoing risk of violence. At The Jo Cox Foundation we are determined to protect our democracy for future generations. Today we take a huge step forward in this work with the launch of the Jo Cox Civility Commission.”
- Jacqui Smith, Chair of The Jo Cox Foundation