A Conservative Party Candidate and equality and diversity advisor to the National Health Service has taken to Twitter to voice her opposition to lesbian couples using sperm banks to have children.
Tara Hewitt is the Chair of Wirral Conservative Future, on the Conservative Party Candidates list, and an NHS Advisor on Diversity and Equality.
A trans activist, she last year came 43rd in the Independent on Sunday’s Pink List of most Influential LGBT people in the UK.
Hewitt took to Twitter on Sunday to state her stance as “pro-life” and anti-abortion, but against IVF treatment, surrogacy and the use of sperm banks, even for example, by a lesbian couple seeking to have a child.
She said that she thought surrogacy was wrong for any couple, saying: “Heterosexual or Same Sex Surrogacy is wrong but adopting and giving a child in need a loving home is such a kind act.”
“We don’t need surrogacy and more created complex families while so many children need adopting.”
In an online conversation with a PinkNews journalist, Hewitt seemed to suggest that children require both a male and female partner, saying: “Both parents are important in a child’s life. We shouldn’t plan to take a child away from their parents unless there is a good reason. Comoditfying [sic] a baby for what ever reason is wrong. I think we need to celebrate and promote adoption more in society a wonderful gift that lets two loving people gay or straight give a child a home who needs one and become a happy loving family.”
She also reacted to news last week that three polyamorous lesbians are expecting their first child together, and claim to be the first lesbian throuple to have a baby, saying she thought it was “selfish”.
“Polyamorous loves having a child is selfish and part of societies [sic] obsession with doing something because we can regardless of if we should.”
“I do not support the new emerging ‘polyamorous’ rights campaign that seems to be emerging.”
She tweeted: “People need to not just engage with the fluffy equality crowd if you want to create change in the uk thats just patting yourself on the back.”
— Tara Hewitt (@Tara_Hewitt) April 27, 2014
She also criticised gay rights activists for pushing former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich to step down after it was revealed he had donated to anti-equal marriage efforts.
A twitter argument raged throughout the day on Sunday and Monday, as Hewitt defended her position. Anti-equality Catholic Universe blogger Caroline Farrow also took to the microblogging site to back up Hewitt against those critical of her views.
In a post on her blog, Farrow claims PinkNews publisher Benjamin Cohen bullied her during the online debate, suggesting that he is transphobic, saying: “My crime [is] being friends with a transgender woman.”
She said she had been subjected to “non-stop 18 hours of unsolicited and unprovoked online aggression from the gay Twitterati.”
Hewitt’s pledge to the 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Trust reads: “I Pledge to support the Trust to strive to ensure nobody receives lower quality care or access to care simply because of their Age, Disability, Ethnicity, Gender, Religion, Sexuality or that they are Transgender.”
A spokesperson for the 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, for which Hewitt is an advisor told PinkNews that the NHS Trust was concerned that the views expressed could potentially impact on her ability to act as an equality and diversity advisor.
They said: “We respect the rights of our employees to have and express their own freely-held opinions. However, in cases whereby these could potentially conflict with the requirements of their role at the Trust we will address this issue with the employee concerned.”
Speaking to PinkNews, trans Cambridge Lib Dem councillor Sarah Brown, who appeared number 27 on the Pink List, said: “I’m surprised and saddened by Tara’s recent outbursts. Despite our political differences, she was always someone I could respect for her hard work and dedication. I don’t know if she’s under some kind of pressure, but the way she’s lashing out at many different groups at the moment is shocking.
“I am, also, deeply concerned that someone working on diversity issues for the NHS has expressed such firm opposition to the availability of abortion and IVF.”
Tara Hewitt, who is also a school governor and a trustee of a disability charity, declined to take a phone interview with PinkNews.
Farrow appeared in the audience of the BBC’s Question Time the week before same-sex marriage took effect in the UK, and subsequently blogged that she was upset when her assertion that marriage is a “child-centric institution” was rejected by the studio audience and panel.
She suggested that gay couples having children was “wrong”, as it “excluded” the biological parents of a child.
Ms Hewitt has nominated herself for a National Diversity Award but omits her rejection of abortion, IVF and surrogacy in her biography.