WATCH: Jon Ashworth calls on Theresa May to sack ‘disgusting, offensive, sexist’ Toby Young

Posted On: 
7th January 2018

Jon Ashworth has called on Theresa May to sack Toby Young from his role with the new universities watchdog over his "disgusting, offensive and sexist" tweets.

Jon Ashworth hit out at the Government's appointment of Toby Young to the new universities regulator
Credit: 
BBC

The Shadow Health Secretary said the journalist's posts – which included a joke about masturbating over a Comic Relief marathon in 2009 and commenting that a female MP had “quite a cleavage” – should see him removed from his post.

Mr Young has also previously described lesbians as "dykes" and called singer George Michael "queer as a coot".

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A furious row has broken out after the Government appointed him to the board of the new Office for Students.

Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, Mr Ashworth said: “These tweets from Toby Young are disgusting, offensive, sexist, she should show some leadership, she should get rid of him.”

The Prime Minister later echoed comments attributed to her in the Mail on Sunday on the same programme, saying that she was "not impressed" by Mr Young's comments, but that his role was not under threat unless he sent further such messages.

"When he was appointed I was not aware of these comments that he had made. Frankly, I'm not at all impressed by those comments," she said.

"He's now in public office and as far as I'm concerned if he was to continue to use that sort of language and talk in that sort of way he would no longer be in public office."

Mr Ashworth also blasted the suggestion his opposite number Jeremy Hunt could be in line for a cabinet promotion to replace Damian Green as First Secretary of State.

Taking aim at the Government over the ongoing NHS winter crisis, he said: “[Theresa May] hasn’t got a plan to get those people off the trolleys in corridors, those elderly people this freezing January being treated in ambulances. She’s got no plan for them.

“Her only plan, apparently, is to promote this Health Secretary. She should be demoting this Health Secretary. If she promotes this Health Secretary tomorrow it is a betrayal of those 75,000 in the back of ambulances.”