Bids on Tracy Brabin's off-the-shoulder dress pass £14,000

Proceeds from online auction of House of Commons dress to go to Girlguiding charity

Bids on an off-the-shoulder dress worn by Tracy Brabin in the House of Commons have passed £14,000 in a charity auction.

The Labour MP was forced to defend her attire after the dress slipped off her shoulder when she leaned on the dispatch box because of a broken ankle on Tuesday.

Brabin decided to sell the dress for charity on eBay, where bids reached £14,200 on Saturday afternoon.

The auction ends on Thursday and the money raised will go to Girlguiding, a charity for girls and young women in the UK.

Brabin’s outfit had been criticised on social media earlier in the week. It was a topic of discussion on the BBC’s Question Time on Thursday – where one audience member described it as “a disco outfit”.

The Labour MP responded to criticism with a tweet.

Hello. Sorry I don’t have time to reply to all of you commenting on this but I can confirm I’m not....
A slag
Hungover
A tart
About to breastfeed
A slapper
Drunk
Just been banged over a wheelie bin.

Who knew people could get so emotional over a shoulder... 🙄 https://t.co/sTWWiEY2TF

— Tracy Brabin MP 🌹 (@TracyBrabin) February 4, 2020

She said she felt the reaction had been overblown. “All of that sexualisation about a shoulder, it’s like The Handmaid’s Tale gone mad. Or Victorian England, with an ankle showing,” she told the Times.

On Friday Rebecca Long-Bailey defended Brabin and criticised the levels of scrutiny faced by women politicians over their appearance.

The Labour leadership contender told BBC Breakfast: “Women tend to get that scrutiny far more than men. It is routine for women in politics and in public life, unfortunately.”

The dress listing on eBay reads: “Black dress worn by Tracy Brabin MP in ‘shouldergate’ as widely covered across the media.

“This is an Asos dress, which has been flying off the shelves as a result of the coverage – and is now sold out! All money raised will go to Girlguiding UK to support their work helping girls build confidence and self-esteem, in the hope that they grow up to be leaders.”

Guardian staff and agency

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