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General Election 2010

Tory candidate says rights of B&B owners is a ‘grey area’

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  1. “A public house has the right to refuse a customer and they don’t have to give a reason, so I have considerable sympathy for B&B owners in this case.”

    The important question to ask is this: does a public house have the right to refuse a customer because they are black, or because they read the gardian (or participate in an activity/instantiate any property that the bar owner dislikes).

    Having the right to turn anyone away is not the same as having the right to turn someone away because they have certain properties (e.g, are of a certain race, sexuality, or have certain characteristics). The latter is having the right to turn someone away based on a certain discriminatory rationale.

    If public houses are allowed to turn people away because they instantiate certain properties disliked by the owner of the public house, this is only an argument for allowing B&B’s to be allowed to do the same if the reasons that justify public houses’ right to refuse to serve certain people applies to B&B’s. But what are the reasons which allow, (assuming Public houses are allowed to turn away people because they instantiate properties deemed undesirable by the owner of the public house) public houses to refuse to serve certain people because they instantiate certain properties deemed undesirable by the owner of the public house? Furthermore, in what way do such reasons apply to the case of B&B’s?

    These philosophical questions must be answered, before talk of a grey area can be realistically accepted.

  2. I challenge anyone on the following post to give a coherent and satisfying answer to my questions. The questions are extremely important, and I am very sceptical they can be given a good answer by the Tories.

  3. It is a slippery slope from this Tory candidate’s sympathy for poor straight business folk wanting to hate gay people and exclude them from their B&Bs to the likes of Nick Griffin who talks of gay men kissing being “creepy” and wanting to ban civil partnerships. You are either on the side of equality and the law – or you are bigot encouraging people to break the law. Choose.

    The Conservative Party not only fails to offer support to this gay couple but has had the audacity to defend Chris Grayling’s (Shadow Home Secretary) homophobia too. Chris Grayling has not been sacked – or even disciplined – just old homophobe William Hague saying what a jolly good bloke he is and grinning: a complete disgrace.

  4. Another one trying to have it both ways, blah, blah, blah………

  5. grey area. pathetic. would it be a grey area if they had a sign outside saying ‘no black’, or ‘no muslims’. no it wouldn’t. the place would have been burnt down by now if it did.
    this is just proof that the tory party think of gay people as second class citizens who others have the right to discriminate aginst.
    will all the gay tories on here wake up – you are voting for a party that thinks you are not equal to the rest of society.

  6. marjangles 9 Apr 2010, 6:02pm

    I think it would be interesting to see how people would have reacted had it been a black couple or mixed race couple turned away. But because it’s a gay couple and because these people call themselves ‘Christians’ then it suddenly becomes a ‘grey area’. Like hell it is, the law is the law and once you open your home to paying customers it stops being just your home and starts being a place of business and so the law applies. I am sick of hearing people say that this is their home, I don’t know about other people on here but I don’t advertise my home on a website, take in complete strangers or charge guests for staying.

  7. What part of this legislation does this guy and the Conservatives not understand?
    Goods, facilities and services

    4.—(1) It is unlawful for a person (“A”) concerned with the provision to the public or a section of the public of goods, facilities or services to discriminate against a person (“B”) who seeks to obtain or to use those goods, facilities or services—

    (a) by refusing to provide B with goods, facilities or services,

    (b) by refusing to provide B with goods, facilities or services of a quality which is the same as or similar to the quality of goods, facilities or services that A normally provides to—

    (i) the public, or

    (ii) a section of the public to which B belongs,

    (c) by refusing to provide B with goods, facilities or services in a manner which is the same as or similar to that in which A normally provides goods, facilities or services to—

    (i) the public, or

    (ii) a section of the public to which B belongs, or

    (d) by refusing to provide B with goods, facilities or services on terms which are the same as or similar to the terms on which A normally provides goods, facilities or services to—

    (i) the public, or

    (ii) a section of the public to which B belongs.

    (2) Paragraph (1) applies, in particular, to—

    (a) access to and use of a place which the public are permitted to enter,

    (b) accommodation in a hotel, boarding house or similar establishment,

    (c) facilities by way of banking or insurance or for grants, loans, credit or finance,

    (d) facilities for entertainment, recreation or refreshment,

    (e) facilities for transport or travel, and

    (f) the services of a profession or trade.

    (3) Paragraph (1) does not apply —

    (a) in relation to the provision of goods, facilities or services by a person exercising a public function, or

    (b) to discrimination in relation to the provision of goods, facilities or services, where such discrimination—

    (i) is unlawful by virtue of another provision of these regulations or by virtue of a provision of the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003(6) (“the 2003 Regulations”), or

    (ii) would be unlawful by virtue of another provision of these Regulations or of the 2003 Regulations but for an express exception.

    (4) For the purposes of paragraph (1) it is immaterial whether or not a person charges for the provision of goods, facilities or services.


    5.—(1) It is unlawful for a person to discriminate against another—

    (a) in the terms on which he offers to dispose of premises to him,

    (b) by refusing to dispose of premises to him, or

    (c) in connection with a list of persons requiring premises.

    (2) It is unlawful for a person managing premises to discriminate against an occupier—

    (a) in the manner in which he provides access to a benefit or facility,

    (b) by refusing access to a benefit or facility,

    (c) by evicting him, or

    (d) by subjecting him to any other detriment.

    (3) It is unlawful for a person to discriminate against another by refusing permission for the disposal of premises to him.

    (4) This regulation only applies to premises in Great Britain.

  8. Simon Murphy 9 Apr 2010, 6:25pm

    Typical Tory homophobe.

    It’s getting quite clear that if the Tory Law and Justice Party win the election we will see a return to the 1960’s.

    Instead of signs reading ‘No blacks, no dogs, no Irish’ we can expect signs reading ‘No gays’.

    What have the LGBTory Group said about this?

    Oh nothing of course.

    Those irrelevant muppets are too busy attacking their former leader for saying that she will vote Labour because of the Tory Party’s unchanged homophobia.

  9. Yes its totally pathetic, agree with all comments, even Jay (!)
    Thanks Abi1975 its so clear isn’t it.
    Lizzie (overprotective interferring Morder)!!!!

  10. Goods, facilities and services
    4.—(1) It is unlawful for a person (“A”) concerned with the provision to the public or a section of the public of goods, facilities or services to discriminate against a person (“B”) who seeks to obtain or to use those goods, facilities or services—

    * accommodation in a hotel, boarding house or similar establishment

    I don’t see any GREY areas in this, its an open and shut case. The only spanner the Judge might throw into the works, is if he/she feels this is covered by criminal and not civil law. I am sure the B&B owners would not welcome such a ruling.

  11. Why does no one at these rallies not ask the question, VERY publicly, if the candidates support the right of B&Bs to turn away other minorities. They should be asked point blank if B&B owners should be allowed to turn away mixed race couples or Christian couples or any other legally partnered couples.

    Your media in the UK must be as ball-less as ours in the US.

  12. Zeke – I find that hard to believe. No media could be as useless and ball-less as ours in the States.

    Of course people who think it’s ok to turn away same-sex couples probably do think it’s ok to turn away black folks or asian folks or mixed-race couples as well. They just don’t want to be pinned down on it because it wouldn’t play nearly as well with the public – which is exactly why the question needs to be asked, loudly and repeatedly.

  13. As long as B&B proprietors are soliciting the public to stay at their establishments, then they should be subject to the law in the delivery of goods and services even if it offends their so called religious beliefs. If they choose to selectively discriminate then they should have their licence removed and prohibited from running such an establishment. Where does it end, exclude someone based on ethnic background, the infirm, the blind, sexual orientation notwithstanding? Imagine if a gay B&B or gay owned restaurant refused to accommodate straights. So this is what’s in store for us once Cameron is elected?

  14. Fascinating – Grayling visits Leics NW, the Tory candidate in Leics NW then repeats the whole thing about B&B owners being allowed to ban gays – as if he;s been asked to take the issue over – and then, only then, Grayling “apologises”, having passed the issue onto some wannabee who was only too happy to suck up to a senior Tory and take the heat.

  15. I think the picture is becoming perfectly clear that whatever David Cameron says, LGBT people simply can’t trust their MPs to vote through legislation for us, whether in opposition or as the incumbent government. Can’t trust them and don’t trust them as far as I could throw them.

  16. So the Statute Book is grey in parts is it..?
    Must ask the beak next time I am up before him.


  17. dave wainwright 9 Apr 2010, 8:45pm

    diluting the issue by passing the baton to others does nothing to endear me to the tory party , Mr Grayling nor his acolytes and disciples , he is purely attempting to save his own neck , we now know that his sympathies are with the christian moral majority (sic), and he has no understanding nor experience of civil and human rights issues an would therefore make a totally useless home secretary and MP.

  18. Reading the posts on this thread, one would thnk that this is a surprise to some of you. I have been saying since i joined this site three months ago that Callmedave the Salesmans Law and Justice racist homophobic tory Party haven’t changed and won’t change.
    They have always been homophobic and always will be bacause they are deeply xtian or at least pretend to be when it suits them. Just as they will pretend to uphold equality laws until they are elected ,and once they are istalled or if they are installed in Downing st. we will see the true cut of their jib.
    And any fool who thinks they won’t roll back laws already enacted is in for a rough ride. they will ride rough shod over any law they don’t like, and those are extensive.
    Also anyone who thinks they will take any heed of Europe is deluding themselves. For thirty years Europe and the USA fought with them over their conduct in Ireland and they just carried on regardless.
    Also the precedent set last week with juryless courts will become common place, as will conscription of school leavers who don’t go on to third level education. They will be “trained” for a couple of weeks and sent off as cannon fodder to Afganistan, and also Iran because Dave the salesman won’t be strong enough to stand up to the hawks and arms manufactorers and arms dealers and will open up theatres of war all over the place. The peace process in Ireland will be allowed to come to the wall when Peter Robinsons DUP implodes because of corruption. And there is no way the Racist tories will allow Sinn Fein to become the leading party and hence ascend to the office of First minister. The “interst of state security” will once again be the mantra of the day.
    SQUIDGY… This is and opinion and not an attack on you……just in case you think it is.

  19. No room on this site for racism so I have just reported comment number #19 and I urge others to do likewise.

    The comment above is by a fake Rob_N!

  20. Mumbo Jumbo 9 Apr 2010, 9:27pm


    You have gone to far. I have reported you.

  21. So good to see that as the weeks have passed and the true colours of the Tories have become clear, the Gay Tories posting here have dropped away and there is such unified belief amongst us that the Tories pose a danger to us.

    Abi, thanks sincerely for posting the terms of the Act.

    I also agree with the poster above who suggests we need to force this question on the Tories in the coming weeks at every possible opportunity. Who are they for? For “The Great Ignored” or we LGBTs whom “The Great Ignored” detest? LET’S MAKE THE TORIES CHOOSE BETWEEN THE TWO.

    And this Tory creature Andrew Bridgen is unbelievable! Do Tories really think so little of us that they think we’re just a bunch of stupid suckers???? Clearly, yes, they do.

    Bridgen has said: “At the end of the day our policy is, we voted for the Equality Bill and as far as people who run a business, they have to offer the same services to everyone. But I do have sympathy with someone who is opening up their own home to a guest. A public house has the right to refuse a customer and they don’t have to give a reason, so I have considerable sympathy for B&B owners in this case.”

    So with one side of his mouth he’s said the law is the law and with the other side of his mouth he’s full of sympathy for service providers who wish to turn away gays, lesbians, transgenders, and anybody whom they deem sexually deviant.

    AND he even goes so far as to advise them how to do it without being seen to be breaking the Equality Act: refuse the customer and simply don’t give the real reason!

    “Oh, I’m awfully sorry, Peter and Paul, would love to have you both, honestly we would, but, oh, dear, we’ve gone and made a double-booking and there just isn’t a room. So sorry! Ta-ta. Yes, I know it’s a cold night and very late, but I’m sure you’ll eventually find somewhere. Goodbye!”

  22. Pumpkin Pie 9 Apr 2010, 9:35pm

    He later said that people should be “sensitive” to faith groups

    Why? Why the **** should we care? There is NEVER an excuse for bigotry. Being bi isn’t just some thing I do, and it’s not just an opinion I have. It’s who I AM. If we should tolerate bigotry from religions, why not tolerate it from the BNP? Why should “that’s how I interpreted the Bible” be an acceptable excuse when “that’s what the BNP manifesto says” isn’t? Religion doesn’t bother me quite as much as the imbeciles who believe it should be above the law and exempt from morality.

    but was satisfied with the current laws and said he was not homophobic.

    Of course he’s satisfied with them. Our equality laws hand us to the zealots on a silver bloody platter.

  23. I will say it again this is the user ID of Rob_N: Rob_N It seems some race hate fascist has tried to discredit Rob_N.

  24. John(Derbyshire) 9 Apr 2010, 10:22pm

    Do the Christian owners of this B&B actually KNOW what their so-called straight guests are doing in that double bed at night? If they knew the exact details-would they still want them there?

  25. Maybe they should install CCTV and put up signs so they get no sodomy from their straight customers John! LOL

  26. BrazilBoysBlog 10 Apr 2010, 12:01am

    Absolutely incredible. Another Tory Tosser advocating discrimination. The whole POINT of this legislation is to stop people discriminating against others based on personal petty preferences. Yet this Tory hopeful thinks the law is a ´grey area´. Of COURSE he ´supports´ the current law… but the fact that he ´has sympathy´ with those acting within their religious beliefs leads me to wonder just what this shower will do once elected?

    I suspect that they will pander to their own religious nut-jobs and start eroding our equal rights… Why? Simply because to them, WE ARE NOT EQUAL! We are merely a ´grey area´ to be discriminated against because of our sinful and ungodly behaviour and life ´choices´.

    When will these bigots learn that some things are NOT ´choices´? People like this Andrew Bridgen CHOOSE to be homophobic bigots, we do NOT choose to be gay, we just ARE.

    Yes, okay, they say that they accept the law is the law… That does not stop them CHANGING it!

    They say they will not seek to change the laws? Rubbish. The Tory apologists on here would do well to remember that, (once elected), they will do WHATEVER they wish. They will do whatever they feel panders to the religious right wing nutters in Britain. They will do just as they have done before and appeal to the lowest common denominator among the British electorate…. by pleasing the homophobes.

    I really hope I am wrong, but I honestly believe that our gay tory voters will start to see our equal rights eroded if/when their party gets into power. Again, I hope I do not have to, but I will watch how things progress in the very near future and I will REMIND each and every one of them, EVERY time a news story develops about ANOTHER equal right lost or watered-down.

  27. Simon Murphy 10 Apr 2010, 1:03am

    It’s quite simple really.

    Despite their expensive PR efforts, it appears quite clear that the Tories still hate us.

    A vote for the Conservatives, seems to be a vote for bigotry.

  28. PinkPolitico 10 Apr 2010, 3:45am

    There is no “grey area”. The law couldn’t be clearer in this respect. If you operate a business then you are required to adhere to the laws of the land and that means not discriminating on a number of grounds including sexual orientation. These homophobic Tories just resist an opportunity to indulge their bigotry and intolerance.

    I think LGBT voters need to focus on the fact that the best result the Tories can hope for on May 6th is a very small majority and if, heaven forbid, this is the result then Cameron will have no choice but to take very seriously the “concerns” of his backbenchers if he is to get his policies through Parliament. This means far-right homophobic Tories such as the idiot quoted in this article would enjoy considerable leverage over government policy. The watering down of existing equality protections would only be the start and we could certainly expect to see a complete halt to the progress that has occurred on gay rights over the previous 13 years.

    The best result from an LGBT perspective would be a minority Labour government supported by the Lib Dems exerting real influence on issues such as equality, religious influence in education, electoral reform etc.

  29. The Big Yin 10 Apr 2010, 4:38am

    can i open a bakery in my own home, but be allowed to flout health & safety laws? if anyone complains, i just write to the daily wail as “peeee ceeee gone maaaaaaad!!!!”

  30. I’m sorry but this is just another person with his own personal opinion. No I Don’t think he is right in any way but he IS entitled to his opinion. The law won’t change and the Tories don’t seek to change it. Yes we don’t like it but he is allowed to have he own thoughts and is allowed to express them..

    We may not like it but thats Freedom of Speech for you. It works both ways.

  31. “He later said that people should be “sensitive” to faith groups

    Why? Why the **** should we care?”

    This comment IS the problem.

    This is more than likely what people say when we say about being sensitive to the gay community. Maybe it’s that we need to work on. We want people to care. Maybe we could all do with being a bit fairer, regardless of it being gay or religious.

    But if we say we don’t care about other groups how can we expect them to care about us? Two wrongs don’t make it right and Yes I do appreciate my believe that religion is a bad thing but thats not true of All religious people who are being tard with the same brush. There are plenty that are supportive. We need to acknowledge that.

  32. I have to add to this friends of my parents who had, like my parents always been very supportive of gay rights, recently decided to book up in a gay B&B for a short break. They themselves left early after being treated really badly for being a straight couple. Tutting and sniggering, pathetic childish behaviour. This for people trying to support our cause. There seems to be some who what it all but not give back.

  33. No, this is NOT “just another person with his own personal opinion”. It’s someone who hopes very soon to be one of just 650 MPs, the people who make the laws. That is not “just another person”.

    But the thing you should note is that the Tories appear to be playing it both ways, on the surface Grayling gives a weak apology to defuse suggestions that they are STILL the Nasty party and that gay rights will be watered down; but only once he’s set up another Tory to keep plugging the “rights” of religious bigots as being more important than civil equality. In other words, they’ll try to attract the holy nutjob and homophobe voters, while throwing us a sop. Which do you think they’re more likely to pander to if elected ? I’ll give you a clue: it won’t be the LGBT community.

  34. On May 6, the Tories will not have a mandate. Expect more kowtowing to the religious cultists once Cameron is elected.

    According to the Financial Times, the American economy is now recovering and the markets are rebounding, the ripple effect it will have in the EU will cause the Tories to take credit for our own recovery having done essentially nothing. It was the breakdown of the American financial system that caused much of the meltdown in the rest of the world, not Brown, as a result of wreckless fiscal policies and lack of regulation instituted by the conservatives (republicans). Either way, neither Brown nor Cameron will get my vote since they are against my full equality.

  35. Well This is the first time I’ve been on this thread, so I can assure you any previous postings were not by me.

    The idiots on PN ought to check the email addresses before banning, and they would have seen that.

  36. Joe Johnston 10 Apr 2010, 5:40pm

    Of course it’s a grey area – people running businesses in their private homes should be able to choose who they wish to do business with. The loud gay lobby (including most of the posters on here) do not represent me or any of my friends and, I suspect, do not represent the majority of gay people generally.

  37. Joe Johnston: “The loud gay lobby (including most of the posters on here) do not represent me or any of my friends and, I suspect, do not represent the majority of gay people generally.”

    HALLELUJAH!! The Lord be praised!
    The voice of reason at last. Unfortunately, he will immediately be branded as homophobic / Self-loathing / Nazi / All of the above by the resident lefty Rottweilers on here.
    Your fate is sealed.

  38. “The loud gay lobby (including most of the posters on here) do not represent me or any of my friends and, I suspect, do not represent the majority of gay people generally.”

    I think you might be projecting, the majority of gay people support equality, not the right of a bigoted minority to hypocrisy to choose whom they do business with.

    You may as well say ‘Of course it’s a grey area – people running businesses in their private homes should be able to choose who they wish to do business with, what taxes they can pay, what health regulations they can chose to adopt, or what public liability insurance they need to have, or how they can treat their staff”

    This is a business. It follows business law. Its simple. If these pair of religious bigot don’t like it, then close. They then can keep “queers” out of their “pure” home. You seem to miss the definition of what a “private dwelling” is and “place of business”…. its quite simple, look it up.

    And Rob, typical of you to support this nonsense…. you’re hardly an example of a stable individual, gay or otherwise. No surprise you’d be backing right wing bigots, given your own angry racist rubbish. Maybe a lesson is law might help too, you seem particularity weak (or ignorant) on that subject….

  39. Will: To paraphrase a typical Irish quote: “One man’s racist is another man’s patriot.”

  40. Oh, and why exactly is that typically Irish, you bigoted moron?

    “Prejudices are the chains forged by ignorance to keep men apart”
    – Countess of Blessington

    ….so apt for you, and a real Irish quote too.

    So, Rob, ever do anything about all that anger that drives you to such a blinkered existence? Counselling, ever tried it? You should. And pick up a history book while you’re at it…. hell, ANY book.

  41. Jesus, Rob-N you really are such an utter arsehole. They must have bullied you bad at school.

  42. Will: I was referring to the constantly reminded phrase by Adams / McGuiness that “Ones man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter”. Spoken usually through gritted teeth as yet another milk churn exploded in a busy street mowing down women and children.

    I guess it’s all a matter of perspective.

    As for the anger, yeah, I handle it well.
    I take it out on arseholes like you.

  43. Oh, boo hoo, we poor Irish have so much to answer for, oh how can he hold our heads up…..

    I don’t need to say this, as it looks like someone beat me to it in the last comment, but you are one intellectually retarded arse-wipe of a human. That boyfriend of yours must have the sensory perception of Helen Keller to be with you…. either that or he’s a bigger arsehole than you actually are, or you pay for it.

  44. Jean-Paul Bentham 11 Apr 2010, 7:57am

    Is it me, or does Andrew Bridgen look like the proverbial stuffed shirt?

  45. John(Derbyshire) 11 Apr 2010, 10:03am

    Rob N and Joe johnston- So if I was running that B&B-if I opened the door and saw a married black couple I could say “piss off-I don`t want blacks staying here”??

  46. “So if I was running that B&B-if I opened the door and saw a married black couple I could say “piss off-I don`t want blacks staying here”??”

    Ironically that’s EXACTLY what our erudite friend Rob-N wants…. he has a bit of a penchant for abusing “foreigners”, thinks becuase he’s research his peasantry “400 year” English heritage, he has the right to demean any other race in “his” country and chuck them out.

    Enlightened, isn’t he?

  47. A simple question for everyone ! Not politicaly motivated
    What is public and what is private?
    My understanding is that the B&B in question is open to the PUBLIC and therefore no longer private.
    OR am i being to simple ?

  48. Just because David Cameron pays some lip service to equality doesn’t mean the res of his party has changed.

    Vote tory and you will soon see signs on the doors of businesses saying ‘No dogs, no gays’. Once poeple can put up ‘no gays’ signs then it wouldn’t be impossible to imagine ‘No blacks, no Irish, no gypsies’ being seen again too.

  49. “My understanding is that the B&B in question is open to the PUBLIC and therefore no longer private.
    OR am i being to simple ?”

    No, exactly right Niall. Its becomes a place of buisness, and therefore comes under the law regarding premises and providers of services to and for the public, like a shop or a hotel. Its vry simple really, but some here seem to miss the obvious.

  50. Thank you for the clarification Will and draging this back to the actual issue in question. So a SIMPLE undestanding would be that Mr Andrew Bridgen, Chris Grayling and Joe Johnston (comment 34) beleive that they above the law ?
    Will do you know where the “Grey area” is ?

  51. “Will do you know where the “Grey area” is?”

    Well, as far as I’m concerned, there is none. The law is quite clear on the definition of their obligation as a business, with regards to not discriminating your services, public liability insurance, data protection, health and safety, employment law, etc. The only difference between our erudite B&B owners and a hotel is one is a Limited Liability Company, and the other is probably a Sole Trader. But the law is there to protect both provider and recipient of the services/goods, and applies equally to a Sole Trader or a Multinational Corporation.

    I can only assume the “grey” area is the misguided belief among a small few that a B&B is not a business and therefore above the anti-discrimination legislation, or that for some reason belief in a god that cannot be proven is reason enough to selectively discriminate to those sections of society you just don’t like. They are of course wrong. When you charge the general public for a service or goods you provide, by very definition, you are operating a business, and as such you do so with free will and with the expectation to obey the laws relating to that business. There seems also to be a misconception that there is no choice for the “poor owners”… there is:- if they cannot in good conscience obey the laws put in place to protect their CUSTOMERS and run their business within the confines of the law by providing a service equally, impartially and without discrimination, then they have the option to close.

    A civilised society cannot operate with unfounded discrimination against a section of society based on contradictory religious beliefs, and nether can a business.

  52. Thank you Will for putting very clearly for me and the above to undestand
    So it would be correct that we are ruled by the law of the land and not religion

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