G4S apologises to LGBT Lib Dem group after demanding to see banner
Security firm G4S has apologised to LGBT delegates at the Lib Dem conference after it was accused of trying to stifle freedom of expression.
The company has been hired to conduct security checks at the party’s conference in Glasgow.
Staff have also been scanning for potentially offensive campaign material, according to the BBC.
LGBT+ Liberal Democrats were quizzed by G4S staff on Tuesday morning over what was written on one of their banners.
It simply showed the name and rainbow logo of the group.
Lib Dem Councillor Sarah Brown told PinkNews.co.uk: “They were supposed to be providing physical security for the conference. That they take it upon themselves to screen what members of a political party might want to say and promote inside our own conference seems Orwellian and disturbing to me.”
“They said they were looking for ‘objectionable’ material, but never defined what ‘objectionable’ means. Do political campaigners have to get approval from private security firms about what we can campaign on now?”
Zoe O’Connell, of LGBT+ Liberal Democrats, contacted the Lib Dem’s Federal Conference Committee, which spoke to G4S bosses at the Scottish Exhibition Centre venue about the incident.
It was then announced that G4S would no longer be screening material for content.
In response, a G4S spokesman said: “We routinely make sure that banners and flyers coming into the events we secure do not contain any content that might cause offence to others.
“On this occasion we did examine a banner which was inside a bag and it was quickly permitted through security. We apologise if any delegates were upset by our actions.”