An independent report into how the Liberal Democrats dealt with harassment claims, has revealed a series of failings.
The review was sparked by allegations of sexual harassment involving the party's former chief executive Lord Rennard, who has strongly denied the claims made against him.
The report, conducted by Helena Morrissey, was described as "sobering reading" by party leader Nick Clegg. It concluded:
- Complaints were not investigated in a "timely and professional" manner
- The allegations should have been escalated for full investigation
- Little evidence to suggest a conscious attempt to ‘cover up’ problems
ITV News Political Editor Tom Bradby reports:
It also reported that mistakes had been made by Nick Clegg, Danny Alexander and Jo Swinson:
The report went on to say Swinson and Alexander's approach to the complaints were "insufficient".
It stated: "The issues were ‘handled’ informally, principally by Jo Swinson and Danny Alexander, because that is what they thought the women wanted – primarily to protect their identities. While their actions were, I believe, in good faith, this approach was ultimately not sufficient.