Gracie’s Law: Family tell of their delight after petition reaches 100,000 signatures

Gracie Spinks’ family has told of their delight after the Gracie’s Law petition reached and exceeded 100,000 signatures following a remarkable community effort.

Friday, 7th January 2022, 3:30 pm

The online petition – which was started by Chesterfield campaigner Jackie Barnett-Wheatcroft after Gracie’s tragic death last year – will now be considered for a debate in Parliament.

Gracie’s parents, Richard and Alison, brother Tom and sister Abi and the rest of the family say they are ‘delighted’ with the petition reaching its target.

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Chesterfield's Gracie Spinks, who tragically died last year.

They said: “We hope that through Gracie’s Law and her legacy we can make changes for stalking victims, and have an ongoing legacy in Gracie’s name.

“We would like to thank everyone who signed the petition and also everyone who has supported us over the last seven months with love and kindness.

“Gracie’s message… it’s time for change.”

Gracie, 23, of Chesterfield, was murdered in Duckmanton on June 18 last year – four months after she contacted police to make an allegation of stalking about her killer, whose body was also discovered that day.

The petition calls on the Government to provide more funding for advocates to help victims of stalking.

According to the petition, this should also help the police to investigate cases more thoroughly, potentially preventing threats to life.

The petition needed to reach 100,000 signatures by February 3 in order to be considered for a debate in Parliament.

Jackie said: “I can’t believe it!

“It’s absolutely amazing what everyone has done and I can’t thank you all enough.

“It’s an amazing achievement – I’m so proud.

“We’ve done it!”

Zowie Shirley, who is also heavily involved with the campaign, added: “We’re just so overwhelmed and happy.

“We thank everyone for all their hard work in getting us to this stage.”

Next week, Jackie will have a meeting with safeguarding minister Rachel Maclean, who is responsible for tackling violence against women, as people await a Gracie’s Law debate in Parliament.

People of Chesterfield and beyond have been signing, sharing and raising awareness about the petition to ensure it hit the target – and everyone should feel proud for making a difference.

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