Vera Baird welcomes visa ban

Vera Baird welcomes visa ban

Vera Baird has welcomed the news that US self-styled ‘dating coach’ Julien Blanc has been denied a visa to visit the UK.

The Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner said she was delighted Blanc, whose proposed visit had led to a petition of more than 150,000 names being sent to Home Secretary Theresa May calling on his visa to be refused, would not be coming to the UK.

Blanc, who hit the headlines because of his history of inciting violence against women, has held ‘dating seminars’ suggesting men use harassment and abuse tactics to attract women and has been widely criticised for his sexist, racist and criminal approaches to women.

Earlier this year he cut short his Australian tour and had his visa cancelled when he left the country.

Vera Baird, who with her fellow north east Commissioners launched a joint Violence Against Women and Girls strategy, said the right decision had been taken to deny Blanc a visa.

“I’m pleased the Home Office took this decisive action to prevent him from entering this country and I am pleased common sense has prevailed.

“As a lifelong campaigner against violence against women and girls, I was appalled that he was going to be allowed into this country to share his negative and violent views.

“This decision will send the right message out not only to people suffering from sexual and domestic violence but the wider public in this country.”

Since Mrs Baird became Commissioner two years ago she has worked extensively to prevent sexual and domestic violence and it is one of the priorities of her Police and Crime Plan.

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