Statement from the Disability Hate Crime Network (Contempt of court and other reporting issues for the Jo Cox killing)

From the co-ordinators of the Disability Hate Crime Network:


We are all saddened and shocked by the killing of Jo Cox and we would like to extend our sympathies to her family, to her constituency and to all those who knew her.

A local man has been named as her alleged attacker and his family has made it clear that he may have had a long-standing mental health condition. In addition, it is being reported that he may have had links with extremist groups.

As co-ordinators of the Disability Hate Crime Network, we would urge, as we would always do, pre-trial, caution in reporting, on social media and in the press generally. This is so that there is a fair trial and that it does not break down. The family of Jo Cox deserve nothing less.

The alleged attacker, also, deserves a fair trial. As a person who may have a disability, he may need, and be given, extra support during the trial process. Uncomfortable as it may seem at times, given the tragic nature of the circumstances, reporting of his disability should be done within the usual reporting guidelines of mental health.



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