Harold Wilson’s government decriminalized homosexuality in 1967.
Labour abolished Section 28.
Labour equalized the age of consent.
Labour gave statutory rights for NHS fertility treatment for lesbians.
Labour created civil partnerships.
Labour delivered the votes that put equal marriage on the statute book.
The extraordinary progress Britain has made on lesbian and gay rights over the last 20 years is one of Labour’s proudest achievements.
But we’re determined to go much further
– to make sure Britain is a society where LGBT people are never held back or discriminated against because of their sexuality or gender identity
– to work for a world where they can live free from persecution
– to ensure a society where LGBT young people are free from bullying – where almost a quarter of LGB young people and half of trans will not try to take their own life.
Labour has published its plan for a better future for LGBT people.
You can read all the major points below – and the full document here. http://www.labouremail.org.uk/files/uploads/efa44ade-f0f1-8aa4-6dfe-c434014b817f.pdf
Launching the LGBT manifesto, Angela Eagle pledged that Labour will prioritise access to mental health services for young people, including those bullied because of their sexuality or gender identity and ensure teachers are equipped to identify problems early and link children up with support.
That commitment forms part of a wider package of measures to tackle discrimination and promote positive representation for LGBT young people, including action on homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in schools, strengthening the law on hate crime and challenging narrow and prejudiced representations of LGBT people in public life.
Labour’s LGBT manifesto pledges five promises to the LGBT community to drive forward progress:
1. Tackle the discrimination that holds LGBT people back: Labour will strengthen the law on LGBT hate crime, undertake a review of gender identity law and policy and implement ‘Turing’s Law’ offering posthumous pardons to gay men convicted for homosexuality.
2. An education free from homophobia, biphobia and transphobia: With Labour, teachers will be equipped to tackle LGBT-phobic bullying, and we will introduce age-appropriate compulsory sex and relationship education in all State-supported schools so that young people learn to respect each other’s relationships
3. Leadership on LGBT rights around the world: Labour will appoint the UK’s first International envoy on LGBT rights to promote respect on LGBT rights globally, and review the procedures for asylum seekers fleeing persecution for their sexuality or gender identity, to ensure the rules are upheld fairly and humanely.
4. Accessible and supportive health services: With Labour, people will have an equal right to mental health treatment including talking therapies and we will work with the trans community to improve access to gender care services.
5. Fairer and more diverse representation in public life: Labour will work to improve LGBT representation in Parliament and challenge narrow representations of LGBT people across public life – seeking and supporting more LGBT people to run as candidates for public office.
Angela Eagle, Labour’s Shadow Leader of the House of Commons, said:
“I’m proud that over the twenty three years I’ve been in parliament Labour has helped to deliver legal equality for LGBT people, but now we face a fight to make that equality a reality for every single LGBT person in our country. Too many LGBT young people are growing up scared and alone because they are bullied at school and don’t have sufficient support when their mental health suffers. In government Labour will finish the job we started and ensure every LGBT person has the chance to achieve their ambitions free from prejudice and discrimination.”
Gloria de Piero, Labour’s Shadow Equalities Minister, said:
“As a country we have made huge strides towards equality in law and in life for LGBT people, and it is a source of huge pride that so many of these were delivered by Labour in Government. But when so many LGBT young people still suffer discrimination and bullying we cannot be complacent.
“Labour will continue to drive forward progress with a plan to tackle homophobic bullying, strengthen the law on hate crime, improve access to mental health services for all and provide international leadership on LGBT rights.”
And Sir Ian McKellen “I am impressed by the aims and commitments of Labour’s manifesto for LGBT people, particularly the appointment of Michael Cashman as an international LGBT Rights Envoy. Such initiatives cost little, yet help make the world a better safer place for us all.”
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Respect in Society and at work
• Implement ‘Turings Law’ offering posthumous pardons to those men previously convicted under anti- homosexuality laws.
• Undertake a review of gender identity law and policy.
• Implement the dual discrimination provisions of the Equality Act.
• Abolish the Government’s tribunal fee system.
• Strengthen the law on homophobic, biphobic and transphobic hate crime to equalise protection, and improve recording by the CPS.
An education free from homophobia, biphobia and transphobia
• Support schools to implement a zero-tolerance approach to LGBT- phobic bullying.
• Ensure all teachers are equipped to tackle homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying.
• Make age-appropriate sex and relationship education compulsory in all state-funded schools.
• Prioritise early intervention and referral for young LGBT people to access mental health services.
Leadership on LGBT rights around the world
• Appoint an International LGBT Rights Envoy to promote respect for LGBT human rights globally.
• Work towards the decriminalisation of homosexuality worldwide and greater protection and recognition for trans people.
• Protect the Human Rights Act and work to improve recognition of same sex marriage and civil partnerships of British Citizens across the European Union.
• Review the process and guidelines around applications for asylum on the basis of persecution for sexuality or gender identity.
Accessible and supportive health services
• Improve mental health support, giving people the same right to access talking therapies and mental health treatment as they currently have for drugs and medical treatments.
• Ensure teachers are trained to identify problems early and link children up with support.
• Work with the transgender community to improve access to gender care services.
• Make reducing undiagnosed and late diagnosed HIV a national priority, working to challenge the stigma of HIV and promote increased availability of testing.
Fairer and more diverse representation in public life
• Support more openly LGBT candidates through the future candidates programme.
• Remain committed to positive measures to improve representation amongst our MPs such as All Women Shortlists.