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UK: online abuse against black women MPs 'chilling'

In response to reports of huge levels of online abuse against black women MPs for defending Black Lives Matter protests, Kate Allen, Director of Amnesty International UK, said:

“Reports of horrifying levels of online abuse against black women MPs are deeply concerning.

“Our research has revealed the shocking levels of abusive tweets hurled against women of colour in politics and public life - especially black women, who were found to be 84% more likely than white women to be mentioned in abusive or problematic tweets.

“The content of this abuse can be extremely disturbing - including death and rape threats - and have a chilling effect on people’s willingness to speak out.

“These vicious attempts to silence black MPs must be met with action. Racist online abuse must be called out and properly tackled, and social media companies like Twitter must do far more to combat this extremely worrying trend, so that women can feel safe to participate in public debate and politics.”

Black women 84% more likely to receive abusive tweets than white women

Research Amnesty carried out in 2018 into abuse against women politicians and journalists on Twitter found that black women were disproportionately targeted, being 84% more likely than white women to be mentioned in abusive or problematic tweets. 

Further Amnesty research into online violence against women:

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