Fathers’ rights campaigner who protested on Jeremy Corbyn’s roof among Peterborough by-election candidates
A fathers’ rights campaigner who protested on the roof of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is standing at the upcoming by-election in Peterborough.
Dad of three Bobby Smith from Stevenage started his campaigning group Give Me Back Elmo in 2014 after what he believes is rough treatment by the family courts.
His protests have also seen him arrested for scaling the roof of Buckingham Palace with a ladder, while he stood in elections against Prime Ministers David Cameron in 2015 and Theresa May in 2017.
His manifesto is to:
. Change family courts so there is a presumption of 50/50 contact after separation, unless there is undeniable proof that one of the parents poses an emotional or physical risk.
. Eradicate the gender pay gap within a year by making it mandatory that men take one year off of work with full paternity pay when they become a parent.
. Ensure proper funding and support is given to all victims of domestic abuse, male and female.
. Dedicate “as much time as needed” to the “epidemic that is male suicide”. He said: “These men are being failed and ignored on a large scale.”
. Remove the stigma around the phrase “mental health” by referring to it only as “emotional wellbeing” and by setting up dedicated non-judgemental support groups.
Other more outlandish suggestion include:
. Making the word ‘Brexit’ illegal and to immediately start building a wall around Peterborough to keep the Remainers and Leavers out.
. Sending a message Peterborough is open for business by “compelling every food bank to remove the word ‘food’ from their signs”.
One final promise was: “To ensure I outlast my predecessor, I will switch off all speed cameras in Peterborough whenever I am driving in the area.”
That was a reference to former MP Fiona Onasanya, who was jailed for three months for perverting the course of justice after her car was caught speeding in Thorney.
This triggered a Recall Petition which was signed by 19,261 of her constituents (27.64 per cent), passing the 10 per cent threshold needed to trigger a by-election.
The by-election will be held on Thursday, June 6.
The full list of candidates can be viewed here.