Reader comments · Councils to be banned from asking residents if they are gay or transgender · PinkNews

Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.


Councils to be banned from asking residents if they are gay or transgender

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. Staircase2 2 Sep 2011, 4:43pm

    I think that Eric Pickles is a bloody idiot!

    Of COURSE the collection of this data is important – its actually VITAL – how else can they deliver the right services to the right people at the right time and know they are spending money wisely?

    Of course the truth is that Eric Pickles wants to abandon this EXACTLY for those reasons – he doesn’t think that knowing where money needs spending on LGBT people is ‘right’ at all.

    He’s a reactionary old bigot and the sooner he and his lot lose their seats the better!

    1. Sister Mary Clarence 2 Sep 2011, 7:40pm

      On the subject of reactionary old bigots, you seem to have missed the point that he is no proposing an end to all personal data collection, but is indicating that he wants to see it reduced in some cases.

    2. Staircase2 simply has another agenda. rather than critically giving a view on the subject at hand he uses this opportunity as another dig at the Tories. Sigh! Not happy unless someone is attacking or against you. Sad, sad sad.

    3. That’s not your decision to make. Not everyone is a butch or a screaming queen. Some are only out among their immediate circle, friends & family, but don’t blurt it out to every neanderthal they come across.

      The most ridiculous council forms these days ask for sexuality. Even general repairs, worker satisfaction forms ask it. It’s added for no reason at all. But can make the difference between homophobic events for many people if information like that gets into the wrong hands.

      As for the trans side. I know a few transgender people. They are NOT out at all to anyone but close firends, they could be put in serious physical danger because of these needless forms. It all leads local gossip and the first brain-dead cretin that finds out who likes to beat on people for no other reason than being different.

      Forget the Data Protection Act, it’s nonsense, office gossip always wins, it’s impossible to prove the origin of the information. And then a perfect stranger breaks your jawbone.

  2. This is the right thing to do , ban all the councils from being intrusisve in other people private bedrooms and person relationships, as long as these people are not hate biggots which play a major part in which way theise people vote and harm others you must have all human rights equal rights councils in order to fairly implement and delegate anyting on behalf of all the people , but wheter the people are gay or what color or gender they are that should never play a part, b;ut a person are a group of people that is a part of a hate group should never be allowed on any panel regardless of th eir identies or statuse, or title, because they are already part of the problem of wrong doing to other , a while back a white judge before retiireing told the new media, that many women and people of colors and other minorites where wrongfull inprisoned our of racism and bigotry and their connections where all the way up to the white house bigots and the police force, who done it, he announced it

    1. There not getting discriminated against they are using it to check they are spending money on what people in the community need

      1. They’re wasting the money at a time when it isnt necessary.
        This stuff is covered by the census already and it’s right they ban it for being intrusive

        1. The census didn’t ask about sexual orientation only CPs. Some people were quite annoyed about this. I seem to recall there was some kind of a campaign to write lesbian or gay etc. in the religion box.

          I don’t see why they can’t just send it out with the electoral roll register and not every time someone uses a service. It would probably be a better organised system and thus waste less money.

          1. Joss – I am VERY pleased the Census did not include orientation. My mum knows I am gay, we spoke about it once and it did not end amicably but it that way, my other family do not know either. I could never imagine ticking the box ‘gay’ or any other sexuality on any form whilst living with my parents, it would be too difficult for me to cope with. That goes for other data collection too, electoral register etc…. sexual orientation doesn’t matter in my view. It has nothing all to do with the council. It can prove dangerous for me, just a simply thing like this but more so, it’s intrusive.

          2. While I agree Luke, it has nothing do do with the council, you are expressing a very personal point there. Not every gay person is living with their parents, and not every gay person has an issue with this question on a census, or thinks being “found out” is dangerous. While I sympathise with your position, and it will get better over time I promise you, there is a simple solution for you:- do not tick the box not worry about ticking the box.

          3. I wasn’t one of those people upset by the census not asking Luke. I was merely pointing out that it didn’t ask
            Quite frankly I hate having to tick the cp box I’d feel much better about ticking the married box…
            However, there are a lot of others who feel differently and these equality forms are not mandatory, unlike the census, so you wouldn’t have to fill it in if you weren’t happy.

          4. I understand many other gay people are happy to tick their sexual orientation I just thought it would be good to add my experience to the debate because for me, personally, I am happy to see the back of the ridiculous intrusive questionnaires from councils. If I lived a lone – would I care? Not as much, I wouldn’t mind ticking the ‘gay’ box but I would be worried as to why the council is asking personal information. I suppose I would just throw the questionnaire away.

            Joss: Perhaps you should of ticked the marriage box? If that is the way you feel about it and it does help to push for equal rights. I am pretty sure the 2001 census did not ask if you felt English or Welsh, it did ask if you felt Irish or Scottish. As I feel more English then British, I would of ticked ‘other’ and wrote English in.

        2. But this way we can see who uses which services most and how they should aim those services to the individual as much as possible.

  3. Justin Varney 2 Sep 2011, 5:15pm

    Without this monitoring information there will be no evidence of the need from the community on which to commission services so once again we will become invisible. It is essential that all LGB and T organisation stand together on the need for monitoring across the public sector so we can finally get the targeted services we need, like smoking cessation and targeted mental health services, and decent universal services that acknowledge and recognise our identities and lifestyles, especially in later life when sheltered accommodation and home help still drive many LGBT people back into the closet for fear of discrimination.

  4. These bogas, sounds like the african man that told me that he had a god that told him that he was the only african man who wanted to be rich and wealthy and didnt want anyone else to have anything even in his african country and told them to remain poor while he the no good african man man told them to get back to some harlem, he said this man was linked to the jehovah witness african man, very evil very abusive, when you cannot see the needs of your on people or any people and care, they need to be thrown out and arrested for using the governments money solely on themselves, and abu;sing the others and their countries or lgbt communities, so make sure you check the background of all officials inclucing the gay to make sure they have help others in humanity and equal rights battles or else their useless and worthless and dangerous to the cause of humanity

  5. you can not trust the whole lot of bigots, no decent people would day want the evil stigma of being such an evil person and labeled a biigot which they are, its a great dishonor and inhumane, you just cannot trust the councils to do right by the people out of good fair hearts, because many dont possess those kinds of good characters anymore they act instead out of malice, and spite , jealousy or brainwashing from evil minitreis, some wake up other still evil, The log cabin republican in the in the states should not ever remove that law suit again and judge virgina as well, the last time they removed it , the bigoted hate republiccans went beneath them and went back to their evil abuses against all of those people, you must enforce and back up the measure to ensure that the evil abuses want retu;rn, thats wise, and the law siuits should stand and not compromised this time you are dealing with treacherous and deceitful people when you deal with racist and bigots they cannot be trusted

  6. Erik Pickles is a well known bigoted tory homophobe who has consistently voted against gay rights and equality. Trust nothing he does. This is a move to stop councils being accountable to minority groups. Typical tory. And some of you voted for them. What a laugh.

    1. Another very instructive comment. You’re a joke.

  7. These survey questions were introduced with the aim of ensuring equality. I wonder whether Lynne Featherstone supports the change. Perhaps I’ll ask her, but usually Lynne seems unhappy about replying to members of the public.

    1. It seems far more likely they were introduced solely because labour love databases of personal details and wasting money
      There wont be any ill effects of scrapping these forms and questionnaires as most of the information is already on the census

    2. I’s day Lib Dems support this measure perhaps even more than the Tories as it fits with the tearing down of the data base state.

  8. We knew that one was coming and if they did that and then when will they make gays wear a pink triangle.

  9. “For example, the rate of breast cancer is higher among lesbians”
    More proof that homosexuality is an unhealthy lifestyle. Also, there is a strong link between anal cancer and sodomy. (The reason for the link is that the lining of the anus, which is much thinner than the vaginal lining , tears easily, and thus is an easy point of entry for viruses and bacteria from the residual fecal matter.
    the fecal matter that resides on the withdrawn penis can also be a source of HPV when the faeces are transferred from the penis to the mouth.
    As for private sexual info, the council have no business asking and people need not divulge. It is a box ticking exercise.

    1. “More proof that homosexuality is an unhealthy lifestyle”

      LOL. What nonsense. I sincerely doubt you can scrawl on your dole slip, let alone understand the finer points of Epidemiology.

      I simple love when you religion idiots try impress us with your “knowledge”. A cheap giggle, I’ll admit.

      1. I am not attached to any religion nor am I a medical expert I do trust the expoerts though. They say it is a FACT that homosexual sex is dangerous, unhealthy and high risk, the accredited statistics are there for all to see.
        You have seen the link I posted. Which facts/s do you dispute?

          1. This is it?????

            Are you serious???

            This is selective quoting on a religious site. Do you expect me, a scientist, to seriously take this as any thing as proof???

            Let me make one point:

            “Sexually transmitted diseases in hetero-, homo-and bisexual males in Copenhagen,” Dan Med Bull

            The “informed” site quotes all the “aliments” a homosexual has, but doesn’t go on to state the quantifiable comparison again heterosexual sex “Urethral gonorrhoea and/or chlamydia infections were diagnosed in 39% of the heterosexuals compared to only 10% of the homo-bisexuals. Twelve percent of the homosexuals had untreated early syphilis, whereas syphilis was exceptional among heterosexuals”

            You need to do better. I suggest you start with 5th grade books on science and work your way up to something resembling something remotely informed. So far you are nothing but a desperate fool grasping at straws to make a pathetic point to back up your bigotry.

            Here’s a word I’m sure you have seen many times: FAIL

          2. And for others, that link of such scientific credibility that Keith puts all his stock into is called “Heterosexuals Organized for a Moral Environment”.

            Indeed. How informed they must be.

            I wouldn’t let this lot wash my car at the intersection for pennies, let along quote them on anything remotely scientific.

            Why do these religions idiots, like this Keith creature, always pull up these obscure and unscientific lunatic sites as some kind of “proof” of anything? Recourse of the desperate, or recourse of the stupid? I can never tell….

          3. Evil Keith 4 Sep 2011, 10:49am

            FVCK OFF…….

          4. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:27am

            Again, as usual, totally irrelevent. We and who we are is NOT up for debate.

        1. “nor am I a medical expert I do trust the expoerts though”

          That, my dear child, is latently obvious.

          “They say it is a FACT that homosexual sex is dangerous”

          No, “they” don’t. You, and fools like you who resort to selective bible quotes in lieu of a decent edcuation or argument, however do.

          “Which facts/s do you dispute?”

          Your “bible” facts. They are as irrational as you clearly are. Ergo, you have provided no facts.

          1. Just ignore him Will it’s the quickest way to make him disappear since no one seems to ban anyone

          2. I agree Joss, but then again, I do enjoy the laugh I get ripping up their delusions like a sheet of paper.

            This one is a particularly uneducated one, more so then most. Its a cheap giggle, a weakness of mine, but hey :)

        2. Evil Keith 4 Sep 2011, 10:49am

          FVCK OFF………

        3. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:26am

          Irrelevent, As usual!

    2. Evil Keith 4 Sep 2011, 10:50am

      FVCK OFF……….

    3. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:26am

      As usual, totally irrelevent. We and who we are is NOT up for debate.

  10. Shut up stonewall use you energy to fight for something worthwhile in the uk !! like marriage!! Listen to your patrons!!

  11. There is a big difference between a proper survey to try to find out about the sorts of people living in a particular area, the services they need, etc. and sending a ‘diversity monitoring form’ with replies to people who took the trouble to complain about potholes.

  12. @Will.
    You certainly are in denial if you think that homosexuals are not the highest risk group. Why are they (practicing homosexuals) barred from donating blood? Why is there no such thing as safe homosexual sex?
    Which statistic do you dispute?
    Which bible fact (regarding homosexual sex) do you dispute?
    Incidentally, I also denounce sexual promiscuity and unclean practice amongst heterosexuals .
    Compare the risk of STDs between those that practice bible standards of sex and marriage and those that do not.

    1. Questions are normally the start of knowledge Keith, but in your case, this is an exception.

      You lost any semblance of reality when you used the term “bible fact”. Nothing of the sort exists, except in the minds of people lie you who more then likely suffer from schizophrenia and poor schooling.

      When you find facts, do let us know.

      1. I am obviously dealing with confused simpleton. I was actually quoting you when I used the term. It is not a term I use myself.
        You said (7 posts up) ..
        “Your “bible” facts. They are as irrational as you clearly are. Ergo, you have provided no facts.”

        1. LOL! Oh dear. Is that your response?

          How about another bible quote? They make you feel like a big man, don’t they?

          At least you seem more comfortable with bible quotes then you do defending a religious lunatic site with the scientific bases akin to tarot card reading.

          When you lean to discuss at a level that reaches the IQ of an average adult, then we have something, you deranged fool.


        2. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:29am

          Again, totally irrelevent. We and who we are is NOT up for debate. Deal with it!

    2. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:28am

      Again, totally irrelevent. We and who we are is NOT up for debate.
      It is you that is in complete denial!!

  13. These questions are intrusive – and in some cases – are protected information. It’s right to get rid of them – and it shows Stonewall for what they are – George Orwell’s ‘Big Brother’ in disguise!

  14. Wait a second before you lot start going absolutely crazy and saying the Tories are harming and hurting you again….

    I completely agree with what Pickles is doing here.

    A few months ago a questionnaire from the council came through the letter box and asked various questions of my household including sexual orientation and I froze and felt physically sick because my mum knows who I am but no one else does and she doesn’t ‘agree’ with it. We’ve only talked about it once. This was a very tricky situation so I managed to grab the questionnaire and supposed of it when no one was looking. Why does the council need to know my sexuality? For me, it proved more trouble than what it was worth. These areas are very sensitive for some people so I am very glad the government is asking councils not to bother. Think about people in my situation before you want the government to include sexual orientation on Census forms, questionnaires etc!

    It’s all amounts to box ticking and that’s it!

    1. So because you can’t be honest with your Mummmmy, everyone else has to forfeit the statistics which help minority groups be accounted for. Typical tory. Does your Mummmmmy vote tory too? One of the big reasons why it is so tricky to talk about your sexuality with your Mummmmy is because section 28 which was only repealed in 2003, after the tories brought it in 1988, made homosexuality a taboo subject at the heart of our education system. And you vote for the tories. HAHA. What a laugh.

      1. I do think my view is a valid one, albeit a small minority, I hope. But I thought I’d add a different dimension to the debate

        Sec 28 has nothing to do with it. Other countries did not have Sec 28 yet are far behind the UK when it comes to gay rights so I don’t believe Sec 28. No doubt it was a bigoted and vile piece of legislation though and I am very happy to see it gone. It also did immense damage and reinforced people’s view that gay people are second class or less.

        Labour’s amendment 60 sanctions religious schools not teaching that homosexuality is equal to any other sexuality.

        Indeed I do vote for the Tories…. I do not see a conflict with my sexuality and my voting intention…. I might of done in the past but since 2005 at least I had not. Change comes from within, and the party has moved forward, still some way to go though. I would rather fight my corner inside the party. I can be a Conservative and gay. You think they conflict, you’re entitled to that view. I disagree.

        1. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:32am

          Amendment 70, Luke.

          It gives faith schools the right to teach homosexuality in accordance to their religion.

          In other words negatively. They then will deny all blame for pupils who harm themselves or commit suicide because of such damaging attitudes.

      2. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:30am

        So long as nobody is harming us as a community it is up to the individual if they wish others to know, in the wider public, or not.

  15. Iv recently started a new job and also got help with accomodation with a council housing authority and have been asked to declare my sexuality. I just dont get how this information is relevant . I lied and put straight . Im not ashamed of being gay, or in the closet. Just feel its nobodys bloody business.
    This argument that ” they can deliver a better service and spend money wisely” is bo**ocks

    1. The point of monitoring is, as has been said, to ensure that ALL service users are catered for. More than one council or organisation has declared that services for LGBT people are unnecessary ‘because we don’t have any of that sort of people’.No-one actually is forced to disclose their sexuality, but if enough do, we are taken into consideration when services are planned. It’s not rocket surgury, people!

    2. So if you think it is irrelevant and it’s nobody’s business, why lie and put straight instead of gay?

      1. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:33am

        Good point!

    3. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:33am

      “I lied and put straight . Im not ashamed of being gay”

      Er – something seriously wrong with that statement.

  16. The point of monitoring is to ensure that services are aimed at the people who will use them- more than one council or organisation has denied they need to provide services for LGBT people because ‘we don’t have any of that sort of people’. No-one is forced to actually declare their sexuality, but the more do, the more services will reflect the actual population, rather than some politicians idea of it. It’s not rocket surgury, people!

    1. Exactly. A survey for the Office of National Statistics last year showed the “result” that 1.5 % of people in the UK are gay. Councils collecting their own data helps to prove there are many more of us than that. My local council plans on the basis of 5 – 6 % and even that may be too low.

      There will always be people that are not able to disclose their sexuality on a form like this, but those of us who can, should. We owe it to those who can’t to make sure that services are available to them when they need them, as well as ourselves.

  17. Although I’m still very suspicious that the Tories are still the Nasty Party, and I accept that these questionnaires were created with good intent, I’m not really convinced that they really do much good.

    They’re certainly quite intrusive, especially when all you want to do is something straightforward such as borrowing a book from the library. It’s probable that gays will be under-represented (so something of an own goal), and of course it generates complaints from the churches and the Daily Mail brigade. That doesn’t worry me per se, but I’d rather provoke them with things that really matter rather than just hand them ammunition on a plate.

    So I’m prepared to accept that it may be the right decision, albeit with the caveat that it’s probably for all the wrong reasons and mustn’t be allowed to snowball.

  18. Mr Pickles is breaching the equality act that has just passed. By law councils now have a public sector equality duty to monitor how services impact upon the gay community.

    Someone should take him to court!

  19. spiritbody 3 Sep 2011, 11:57pm

    Those statistics are needed to highlight a minority so that that minority can be properly protected. Its bordering on homophobic to deny gay people a voice, when they KNOW that any minority is open to abuse and therefore needs special attention. Its not directly becaise we’re gay that we deserve special attention. Its because we are a minority that continues to face unfair treatment. And this is just another unfair treatment.

    1. Agreed, it can be useful to have a few stats to see whether there are any problems.

      But that doesn’t mean that ALL state organisations need to compile databases of the EVERYONE’S sexual preferences.

      For example, when a complaint is made the complainant could be asked whether they wished to record their belief that it related to their sexual orientation, race, religion etc.

      Or a sample of users could be polled.

      The above examples would not be overly intrusive but would still allow any systemic shortcomings to be identified.

      The point is that they don’t have to risk offending a great many people by routinely asking everyone; I must admit I’d be inclined to tell my librarian or dustman to mind their own business if they asked me !

  20. There will always be special needs groups in society, how you determine or define these in a politically correct way is a matter of debate.

    With equality one might conclude that no one person or group should need to be be defined or singled out from another to receive the appropriate assistance..

    Whilst younger people want changes older people do see things differently and perhaps inherently feel that government oversteps the discretion boundary and becomes invasive.

    Pierre Trudeau, stated that the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation! I agree, Life style or sexuality should not be a barrier or determining factor to acquiring government services in a time of need.

    How far? is society willing to go with the belief that this invasive questioning is warranted to provide services without becoming a recorded statistically identified person in a population.

  21. Evil Keith 4 Sep 2011, 10:52am

    All Pink News forums have been rendered useless due to the bigot Keith.

    This site no longer caters for LGBT if it allows this level of abuse.

    Therefore from now on all I am going to say is FVCK OFF……. to every one of Keiths comments.

    Keith…. You can FVCK OFF…….

  22. I’ve worked for local government for a number of years, and I’ve always found it incredibly odd that they collect such information about sexuality, disability etc etc.
    The collection of such information does not actually add anything to the customer/resident experience, and only serves to give support to some internal council aims.
    It’s time that local authorities stopped interfering with matters which don’t concern them, and start treating local residents individually and according to their needs.

  23. are they still asking for race and gender stats?

  24. Jock S. Trap 8 Sep 2011, 10:25am

    Again, I see both sides to this arguement.

    Plenty are happy to say while plenty of others don’t see the need.

    Personally I think it would help get out there that we’re not the minority the likes of the church can kick around. I think they actually are frightened of the fact the real number would be far higher than they could ever imagine which would mean they would have to start taking us, our taxes and our vote much more seriously.

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.