London, UK – 2 July 2018
“The LGBT Action Plan is a welcome start but it falls short on key issues,” said human rights campaigner, Peter Tatchell, Director of the Peter Tatchell Foundation.
He was commenting on the government action plan on LGBT issues which is being announced by the Government Equalities Office tomorrow, 3 July.
“The biggest fail is the lack of any pledge to end the detention and deportation of LGBT+ refugees fleeing persecution in violently homophobic countries like Uganda, Iran, Russia, Egypt and Jamaica.
“Another big omission is the absence of any commitment to compensate gay and bisexual men who were convicted under past anti-gay laws. They suffered greatly; frequently being hit with huge fines. Some were jailed and beaten in prison. They often lost their job, income and home. Many suffered mental breakdowns. Their lives were wrecked for decades. The government’s unwillingness to include compensation in its Action Plan is a huge let down.
“The £4.5 million budget is derisory and insulting. It coincides with cuts in funding for sexual health clinics, which make it hard to get testing and treatment appointments. This is contributing to a rise in infections among gay – and straight – people.
“Banning gay conversion therapy is the right thing to do. It doesn’t work and it is deeply offensive to try to change a fundamental, natural and widespread human characteristic.”