Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper has called on British businesses and the world of politics to do more to celebrate diversity and not merely to “tolerate” LGBT staff.

Speaking at Stonewall’s Workplace Conference, the Labour MP said: “The truth is we don’t have enough openly gay and lesbian MPs being selected for parliament; just as we don’t have enough black and minority ethnic MPs and we don’t have enough women MPs.

“Parliament ought to represent the country – it ought to look like the country that we stand for and represent. We know that we have a huge amount more to do, both in Labour and across the other political parties.”

Last weekend, Liberal Democrat leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg admitted his party was not representative in its membership.

“This party is too male and that needs to change,” he said. “We need more Liberal Democrat role models for black and Asian boys and girls, for disabled boys and girls and for young gay men and women too.

“We must be a more diverse party. And we will be a better party for it,” he stated.