THE number of people who are at home more often due to lockdown could be behind the recent rise in online abuse - according to West Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner.

Mark Burns Williamson discussed the issue at the most recent meeting of the West Yorkshire Police and Crime Panel.

Halifax MP Holly Lynch has recently described the issue of online abuse and "trolling" as a "public health ticking time bomb."

She argued that much more needed to be done to prevent people abusing and belittling strangers online and on social media.

At the Police and Crime Panel meeting, which was held online due to Covid restrictions, Mr Burns Williamson said the increase in online abuse may be down to people spending more time isolated and at home - away from people who may dissuade them from targeting strangers for abuse.

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He said: "We're all concerned with the level of online abusive activity.

"Holly Lynch recently raised a horrific case she was dealing with. The level of abuse online is something we need to look at further.

"It may be the fact that more people are at home more often and not in their normal workplace that has added to it, due to the sheer numbers of people who are now online more regularly."