WATCH: Furious MP accuses Tories of ‘dog whistle politics’ over Andrea Leadsom LGBT remarks

Posted On: 
20th March 2019

A visibly furious Labour MP today tore into Theresa May after Cabinet minister Andrea Leadsom said parents should be free to bar their young children from LGBT education. 

The Commons leader sparked backlash after speaking to LBC radio this morning
Credit: 
Parliament TV

Labour member Lloyd Russell-Moyle accused the Conservative party of “dog-whistle politics” and urged the Prime Minister to condemn "bigots that don’t want LGBT people to be heard in schools".

Commons Leader Ms Leadsom had said she backed LGBT education for children, but argued it should be up to parents to decide when they should be “exposed to that information”.

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At Prime Minister’s Questions, Mr Russell-Moyle said: “I know the Prime Minister campaigned to keep Section 28, which banned LGBT people being talked about positively in schools and led to millions of young people like myself growing up in fear of being LGBT.

“I thought the Prime Minister had seen the error of her ways. But this morning, the leader of the House said on radio that parents should decide when they’re exposed to LGBT education.

“This is Conservative party dog-whistle politics. Will the Prime Minister condemn the leader of the House?

“Will she condemn bigots that don’t want LGBT people to be heard in schools? And will she support Ofsted with good LGBT education in our schools?”

 

 

Mrs May would only said she would send the MP the current government guidance about LGBT education.

The remarks by Ms Leadsom also prompted demands for an apology from the Liberal Democrats.

Lib Dem MP Layla Moran said: “Andrea Leadsom's comment comes across as nothing short of bigoted and offensive.

"What she refers to as being "exposed to that information" is in fact children being educated. Which is exactly what our schools are there to do, and are being taught to understand and be respectful of all individuals, families and relationships.

"The Leader of the House should apologise immediately for this unacceptable language."

The Tory MP however stuck to her guns after a backlash on social media. She retweeted a comment calling her a “staunch support of LGBT education in schools”.

Ms Leadsom said in the LBC radio interview: "I think it’s right that the Government should have passed legislation that requires that relationships and sex education is taught in schools.

"But at the same time I also agree that parents should be able to choose the moment at which their children become exposed to that information."

The row comes after a number of schools in Birmingham stopped teaching LGBT rights to pupils due to complaints by parents.