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Tim Farron: Letting UKIP march in Pride is the real way to change their views

Nick Duffy June 8, 2015
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PinkNews Exclusive
Lib Dem leadership candidate Tim Farron has weighed in against a decision to ban a UKIP group from marching in this month’s Pride in London parade.

Organisers of Pride in London originally approved plans for UKIP LGBT+ to take part in the parade on Saturday 27 June, claiming it would not “discriminate” against them.

However, following a backlash from campaigners including Peter Tatchell, the board reversed its decision, citing “safety” concerns if the group were allowed to march.

A number of politicians have weighed in, with UKIP’s Suzanne Evans, the Conservative MP Nigel Evans and Liberal Democrat peer Lord Paddick all telling PinkNews that they disagree with the ban.

Tim Farron, who is one of two candidates bidding to take over from Nick Clegg as leader of the Liberal Democrats, has also weighed in.

He told PinkNews: “I think the decision to ban UKIP from Pride is a not something I would support. I disagree with all of UKIP’s views on LGBT+ issues but I think ‘no platforming’ them is not the way to go.

“I would suggest inviting them to the event on the 27th and letting them see with their own eyes what a fantastic event Pride is. I think that is a real way to change their views and mindset.”

Mr Farron previously apologised after claiming during a TV interview that rights campaigner Peter Tatchell also opposed an equality law.

The politician had claimed that Peter Tatchell was “on the same side” as him when he voted against 2007’s Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations.

After Mr Tatchell – a strong proponent of the law – accused Tim Farron of “misrepresenting” his views, he told PinkNews: “I do apologise without reservation if I have misremembered Peter Tatchell’s position.

“But to be clear I do believe if you provide a service it must be offered on an equal basis and this comes up again I will vote accordingly.”

Related topics: anti-gay marriage, anti-gay views, anti-same-sex marriage, candidate, Conservative Party, election, equal marriage, Gay rights, homophobic views, LGBT rights, Nigel Farage, Pride, Pride in London, tories, uk independence party, UKIP, UKIP leader Nigel Farage

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