Labour candidate Rosie Duffield cancels hustings

Labour candidate Rosie Duffield has announced she has withdrawn from hustings events as she does not feel safe.

Ms Duffield, who hopes to be re-elected in the Canterbury constituency, has previously faced death threats and multiple instances of abuse over her stance on sex and gender.

In a statement posted on X, she blamed “constant trolling, spite and misrepresentation”, which she said was “being pursued with a new vigour during this election”.

She added “sadly the actions of a few fixated people has made my attendance impossible” and she plans to hold “secure” local events instead, having told The Times earlier this week that she has spent £2,000 on bodyguards while campaigning.

Ms Duffield has said there should be protected spaces where those born male are not allowed to go, such as domestic violence refuges and prisons, and she is against people being able to self-identify as trans to gain access to those spaces.

An internet troll who posted “chilling” online messages threatening to kill Ms Duffield, as well as Harry Potter author JK Rowling, was sentenced in June.

Ms Duffield has spoken out about feeling unsupported by the Labour Party in the past over her views on trans issues and did not attend the 2021 Labour Party conference after online threats to her safety following a row over transgender rights.

Last month, Ms Duffield complained that Sir Keir Starmer offered her “no apology” when the two finally spoke after she told a whip she had not been talked to in two-and-a-half years.

She appeared to be snubbed by leader Sir Keir Starmer at the start of the election campaign when she was not invited to an event in her county.

A Labour spokesperson said: “It is vital to our democracy that prospective parliamentary candidates are able to campaign freely.

“We completely condemn any intimidation tactics towards candidates of any party.”

Earlier this week, a man was charged after Reform leader Nigel Farage was covered in milkshake, leading to warnings that abuse of candidates is an “affront to democracy”.

The full list of candidates standing in Canterbury is:

  • Luke Buchanan-Hodgman, Social Democratic Party
  • Rosie Duffield, Labour
  • Louise Harvey-Quirke, Conservative
  • Bridget Porter, Reform UK
  • Henry Stanton, Green Party
  • Russ Timpson, Liberal Democrats


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