David Cameron appoints first lesbian to a Conservative Government
The Prime Minister has promoted the first out lesbian MP to a Conservative Government as an Assistant Government Whip.
Margot James, the MP for Stourbridge, was promoted by David Cameron in this week’s ongoing reshuffle.
On winning Stourbridge in 2010, Ms James was one of two out lesbian MPs in the last Parliament, and today becomes the first lesbian in the current Government, and the first to serve under a Conservative Prime Minister.
The first out lesbian MP to be promoted to government in the UK was Labour’s Angela Eagle, who was appointed Environment Minister in 1997.
Ms Eagle is currently Shadow Leader of the House and is reportedly running to be Deputy Labour Leader.
Ms James last month claimed that the Conservative and Labour parties are on a “level setting” on equality matters.
She last year criticised fellow Conservative MP Dr Sarah Wollaston for supporting plans to restrict people with HIV and Hepatitis B from entering the UK.
One of eight Assistant Government Whips, Ms James was promoted alongside Simon Kirby, the MP for Brighton Kemptown.
Mr Kirby retained his seat last week despite a campaign to oust him because of his strong support for same-sex marriage.
While some whips, including Mr Kirby fill paid positions, Ms James is unpaid. It is unclear whether or not she declined to accept a salary.