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Hampshire deputy police and crime commissioner resigns after controversial gender equality comments

The deputy police and crime commissioner for Hampshire has resigned after a backlash from controversial comments he made about gender equality.

Luke Stubbs, who was appointed as Donna Jones’ deputy in June last year, claimed at a fire service meeting in December that equality goals “only benefit women and minorities”.

His controversial claims were met with public outcry, and official complaints were also lodged.

Mr Stubbs had come under fire for his comments.
Mr Stubbs had come under fire for his comments.

Now, as a sub-committee has ruled him to be in breach of conduct, Mr Stubbs – who was on a £65,025 per year salary – has resigned, the Local Democracy Reporting Service has learned.

John Beavis MBE, who sits on the police and crime panel complaints sub-committee, said: “We did consider that Mr Stubbs was in breach of the code of conduct, regarding the complaints that have been made against him.

“He does like to speak his mind but if you are representing the police and crime commissioner at a meeting, then you represent her policies.

“Instead, we found that he used the platform to express his personal views.

“It may well be that he has been given this information and decided he perhaps isn’t in the right role.”

Fellow sub-committee member Tony Jones added: “I don’t really know the man personally, but if he feels that he’s got reasons to resign then that’s the end of that.

“I don’t think that would have changed the outcome of this morning’s meeting though.”

Mr Stubbs was formerly a deputy Conservative Party leader at Portsmouth City Council, where he also served under Donna Jones.

At the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service authority meeting in December, he said: “Government – and I think this is wrong – is bringing in quota programmes across the public sector, but only where it benefits women and minorities.

“In areas where it’s mostly men it has to be 50/50, but in areas where it’s mostly women there’s no change.

“Things like the control room have 84 per cent women and I would like assurance that steps are being taken to reduce that.”

Mr Stubbs subsequently apologised for the comments he made.

Police and crime commissioner Donna Jones said: “Following the comments made at the Hampshire Fire and Rescue authority meeting in December, Luke Stubbs offered his resignation from the role of deputy police and crime commissioner and I have accepted it.

“I wish Luke well for the future.”

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