Cheshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, John Dwyer, is facing widespread calls for his resignation following controversial comments he made about ‘short skirts’ during a discussion addressing the abuse of women and girls. The incident occurred during a meeting of the Culcheth and Glazebury Parish Council on November 28, where Mr. Dwyer invited women to participate in a survey on personal safety and crime.

In the course of the meeting, Dwyer remarked, “I notice schoolgirls in my area are all wearing very short skirts, and this did not happen in the 1960s.” These comments were reported to the local Police and Crime Panel, leading to accusations of ‘misogynistic remarks.’

In response to the mounting criticism, Dwyer issued a “full and unreserved apology,” acknowledging the hurt caused by his words. Warrington North MP Charlotte Nichols condemned the comments, stating, “Appalling victim-blaming comments from John Dwyer that should call into question his suitability to continue in his role as Cheshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner.” Similarly, Weaver Vale MP Mike Amesbury criticized Dwyer, describing his remarks as “sexist, misogynistic, outdated,” and accusing him of victim-blaming.

Dwyer, recognizing the gravity of the situation, addressed the complaint, saying, “I want to begin by acknowledging the understandable hurt caused and to make it unequivocally clear that what I said was wrong.” He went on to offer a comprehensive apology to both the complainant and the Police and Crime Panel, expressing regret for the inappropriateness of his comments.

Dwyer emphasized that his words did not accurately reflect his commitment to addressing violence against women and girls (VAWG) and outlined his efforts in driving various projects and initiatives to combat such crimes.

Despite his apology, the controversy has raised questions about Dwyer’s suitability for his role as Police and Crime Commissioner. Critics argue that his comments undermine his stated priorities regarding the safety of women and girls, and the situation has ignited a broader discussion about the need for sensitivity and accountability in addressing issues related to gender-based violence.

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