Upskirting ban: a bi law?

Parliament

The bill to outlaw “upskirting” passed its final hurdle in Parliament yesterday. It’s a welcome reform and particularly of interest to bisexuals.

It has weirdly up til now been legal to take photographs up people’s skirts, dresses, kilts and the like, despite the obvious invasion of personal privacy and personal space involved. Whether it reveals the colour of your knickers or that you are going commando, it’s not something you consented to.

Following one young woman’s decision to not just let this happen to her but to fight it, that has changed, after Lib Dem MP Wera Hobhouse took up the cause and brought legislation to Parliament. That was then delayed when Conservative MP Christopher Chope used parliamentary procedure to try and block the reform – leading political wags to refer to the practice of taking such photos as “chopeing”.

His efforts were in vain however and last night the House of Lords gave the final reading to a reform which will make upskirting illegal. Congratulations to Gina Martin on turning a horrible experience into a force for positive social change.

It may be a law that particularly affects bi people given the past research showing how we are disproportionately likely to be the targets of sexually related crimes such as revenge porn as well as domestic violence, likely in part due to the hyper-sexualisation of bi women.