A box of faeces left outside a Conservative MP’s constituency office has reportedly sparked a police investigation.
Siobhan Baillie condemned the “nastiness” of the act on Monday after the item was found by her workplace in Stroud, Gloucestershire and warned such abuse was putting people off becoming MPs.
“There are plenty of ways to make a point about politics or governments without resorting to putting excrement in a box,” she said. “Because of the nastiness we face, many decent people are thinking twice about standing for public office.”
The box was said to have included a derogatory note written on the inside, with the Stroud News & Journal reporting that it read: “If you don’t clean up your own Sh** why should I?”
A spokesperson for Gloucestershire constabulary told the BBC: “We are investigating an allegation of harassment after an offensive item was left outside Ms Baillie’s constituency office.”
In a post on her constituency website dated 3 November, which showed a partial picture of the box with her name on it, Baillie said: “I have a zero tolerance for this sort of behaviour and my staff, who are caseworkers helping local people with their issues, should not have to deal with things like this.”
Baillie, who has been MP for Stroud since 2019, has spoken of how she was previously targeted after taking maternity leave following the birth of her daughter.
Her leave coincided with the fallout from the Dominic Cummings scandal in 2020, when the then chief adviser to Boris Johnson travelled from London to County Durham during a Covid lockdown.
One person who contacted her office at the time wrote: “Why will my MP not respond to me, given the gravity of the Cummings affair and the impact this is having on public trust. I don’t care that she has just given birth.”
Another constituent accused Baillie of a “dereliction of duty” for being on maternity leave.
At the time, Harriet Butcher, Baillie’s senior parliamentary assistant, said: “Sadly, Siobhan has received unpleasant emails, the vast majority from men who seem to think the 2010 Equality Act does not apply to a woman because she is an MP.
“It does apply and Siobhan has an absolute right enshrined in law to take maternity leave.”
Baillie and Gloucestershire constabulary have been contacted for comment.