Throughout my time as Member of Parliament for Cheadle, I have always sought to show others respect and courtesy, just as I would in any other area of life. I believe it is incumbent on all Members of Parliament to behave respectfully and indeed, the Nolan Principles on conduct in public life require it.
The House of Commons Chamber has always been an extremely lively place, where Members on all sides often feel strongly about the issues being discussed and passions can run high. On occasion, there is some noise or barracking of the person speaking, particularly during important statements or Prime Ministers Questions, and this can cause the temperature of the debate to rise. In such instances, it easy to forget that the House is normally a very courteous place, with accepted practices which date back over the centuries.
I am only too well aware that on occasions when temperatures in politics do rise, women are at the forefront of the abuse directed at those in the public eye.
I am proud of the progress that has been made by women in recent years, with more women than ever choosing a career in politics. and I want to see the proportion of public appointments going to women increase across the board, not just in Parliament.
I am therefore pleased that £400,000 of funding has recently been awarded to organisations that support women to get involved in democracy and politics. This is part of a £1.5 million fund which is being awarded last year to mark the centenary. Initiatives such a Women2Win and #AskHerToStand are also working to select more women, by providing support and advice to women who wish to enter Parliament.