Downing Street has told PinkNews that Nicky Morgan will report directly to the Prime Minister and not the new Equalities Secretary Sajid Javid.

In a government reshuffle on Wednesday, sparked by the resignation of Maria Miller, Ms Morgan was appointed Financial Secretary to the Treasury and also Minister for Women.

She voted against same-sex marriage last year, saying “marriage is between a man and a woman.”

Her appointment has generated surprise and criticism.

Labour’s Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities Gloria De Piero said Ms Morgan must represent all women, “regardless of sexuality”.

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell said: “How can Nicky be an effective and fully inclusive Minister for Women if she doesn’t support the right of lesbian women to marry their partners?”

As part of today’s reshuffle, Conservative MP Sajid Javid, the new Culture Secretary, replaced Maria Miller as the most senior minister responsible for equalities in the UK Government.

But unlike Ms Morgan, Mr Javid, voted in favour of the same-sex marriage act for England and Wales.

The joint ministerial portfolio of women and equalities has now been separated.

Downing Street told PinkNews the move reflected David Cameron’s desire to take a greater interest in women’s policy across government.