Tory politician tried to ‘out’ people during a LGBT community funding row
A senior Conservative councillor has been accused of trying to ‘out’ people during a debate over funding for a Scottish LGBT community group.
At a council meeting in Inverclyde, Depute Provost, David Wilson, called on anyone from the LGBT community to make themselves known.
The disagreement erupted when local authority leader, Stephen McCabe, proposed a motion to give a local group £500 to mark International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia on May 17.
Councillor Wilson hit out against the move, calling it “an unnecessary request” and said that flying a rainbow flag on the day was “plenty”.
During the debate, the Tory candidate for the upcoming Scottish election, said: “Is there anybody here from the LGBT group who are asking for funding?” He later asked if any elected members, council officials or members of the public were members of the LGBT community.
The Greenock Telegraph reported that Labour’s Mr McCabe angrily reacted to Mr Wilson’s conduct.
“I have to say I’m appalled by Councillor Wilson’s behaviour in this debate, to publicly ask people in this meeting to out themselves,” he said.
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Although the Tory councillor denied the claims, Mr McCabe added: “Yes you did. That’s absolutely appalling.”
Prompting divisions in the chamber, the Provost had to repeatedly tell elected members to calm down and stop “shouting and bawling”.
Mr McCabe’s motion was eventually passed, after Mr Wilson’s amendment to reject it was defeated.
All of the other councillors supported it.
Recently, Labour leader, Kezia Dugdale, became the latest politician in Scotland to come out as LGBT.
Four of Scotland’s six party leaders now identify as LGBT with Ms Dugdale joining Conservative Ruth Davidson, Patrick Harvie of the Greens and UKIP’s David Coburn.