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Black women MPs suffer more abuse, says Dawn Butler

SPEAKING OUT: Dawn Butler

DAWN BUTLER has called out the high level abuse that black women in politics face, stating that they face it at a higher level than their colleagues as she backed Diane Abbott’s decision to discuss her health.

Butler said she welcomed Ms Abbott’s frank interview with the Guardian in which she revealed she has been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and said it had impacted on her election campaign.

Her mix up of figures in a series of “car crash” interviews led to widespread criticism from the Conservatives about her abilities as a potential Home Secretary.

Butler, who was Labour’s shadow diversity minister, said: “I think it’s sad that Diane has had to speak publicly but I’m not surprised. As black women, the amount of abuse and scrutiny is wrong and outrageous. I’m pleased Diane now has it under control.


Diane Abbott

“My mum always said to me I have to work twice as hard and be twice as good to even get a little recognition. It’s advice that has unfortuantely stood the test of time.”

In Abbott’s interview, she said she felt singled out and had clearly been on Conservative campaign strategist Lynton Crosby’s “grid”.

She told the Guardian: “During the election campaign, everything went crazy — and the diabetes was out of control, blood sugar was out of contol.”

Today, Jeremy Corbyn’s office confirmed that Abbott remains as shadow home secretary, but that shadow home office minister Lyn Brown is standing in until she returns to full health.

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