Newly-out gay MPs attend Stonewall Equality Dinner
Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans and Conservative MP Crispin Blunt were among the guests at last night’s Stonewall Equality Dinner.
They joined 600 guests at London’s Dorchester Hotel to raise £340,000 for the charity’s gay rights work.
Both men came out last year. Mr Evans’ sexuality was regarded as an open secret in Westminster, while Mr Blunt’s declaration was a shock even to those closest to him.
Other guests at last night’s event included Christopher Biggins, Amy Lamé and Sue Perkins.
BBC newsreader Jane Hill, who was the keynote speaker, hit out at the lack of gay people on television.
She said: “How many gay women are there on telly? I am the only gay on the BBC News Channel.
“It’s 2011 – do we not have a right to see ourselves reflected? Stonewall’s Unseen on Screen research showed how little positive representation there is of lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
“What we crave isn’t tolerance – it’s ambivalence. We still really need Stonewall to fight the bigger battles. But the real good news is when it’s no news.”
Stonewall deputy chief executive Laura Doughty said: ‘All funds raised tonight will go towards Stonewall’s pioneering campaigns for lesbian, gay and bisexual equality – at home, at school and at work.”