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General Election LGBT manifesto guide: This is what the parties have pledged on LGBT rights

Nick Duffy May 31, 2017

We are just one week away from the 2017 General Election, and all of the major parties have now outlined their policy plans.

Ahead of next Thursday’s election Theresa May’s Conservative Party maintains a narrow poll lead over Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party, which is favoured by LGBT voters.

Taking the six parties projected to get the most votes (the Conservatives, Labour, the Liberal Democrats, the Scottish National Party, the Green Party and the UK Independence Party) we take a look at their specific manifesto promises on LGBT issues.

Note: The below only reflects explicit promises made in each party’s 2017 General Election manifesto document.

LGBT-inclusive sex and relationship education

Conservatives: “We will educate today’s young people in the harms of the internet and how best to combat them, introducing comprehensive Relationships and Sex Education in all primary and secondary schools.”

Labour: “To tackle bullying of LGBT young people, Labour will ensure that all teachers receive initial and ongoing training on the issues students face and how to address them. And we will ensure that the new guidance for relationships and sex education is LGBT inclusive.”

Liberal Democrats: “We will introduce a curriculum entitlement – a slimmed down core national curriculum, which will be taught in all state-funded schools. This will include (…) age-appropriate Sex and Relationship Education (SRE). We will include in SRE teaching about sexual consent, LGBT+ relationships, and issues surrounding explicit images and content.”

SNP: Not included

UKIP: “We stand by our 2015 pledge to end sex education in primary schools.”

Green: “The Green Party would guarantee mandatory HIV, sex, and relationships education – age appropriate and LGBTIQA+ inclusive – in all schools from primary level onwards.”

Pressing for equal marriage in Northern Ireland

Conservatives: Not included

Labour: Not included

Liberal Democrats: Not included

SNP: Not included

UKIP: Not included

Green: Not included

Hate crimes

Conservatives: “We will push forward with our plan for tackling hate crime committed on the basis of religion, disability, sexual orientation or transgender identity.”

Labour: “Labour will bring the law on LGBT hate crimes into line with hate crimes based on race and faith, by making them aggravated offences.”

Liberal Democrats:  “Our priorities in the next parliament will be making the positive case for immigration and reducing hate crimes by targeting the people who commit them and making all hate crimes aggravated offences, allowing for harsher sentencing of perpetrators. We will campaign to reduce intolerance, including anti-Semitism, and hate crimes alongside organisations such as Show Racism the Red Card, the Anne Frank Trust UK, and Kick It Out.”

SNP: “The SNP is committed to tackling the challenges of racism and discrimination in society. SNP MPs will continue to demand full devolution of equality law to the Scottish Parliament. Until that happens we will seek equality law reforms to ensure (…) protected characteristics are expanded to ensure all LGBTI people are fully protected from discrimination and harassment.”

UKIP: Not included

Green: “The Green Party would strive to ensure that no LGBTIQA+ person faces discrimination, violence or unequal treatment. The Green Party would strengthen hate crime legislation and public education to tackle harassment and abuse of trans and non-binary people, especially women.”

Gender recognition

Conservatives: Not included

Labour: “A Labour government will reform the Gender Recognition Act and the Equality Act 2010 to ensure they protect Trans people by changing the protected characteristic of ‘gender assignment’ to ‘gender identity’ and remove other outdated language such as ‘transsexual’.”

Liberal Democrats: “We will extend protection of gender reassignment in equality law to explicitly cover gender identity and expression, and streamline and simplify the Gender Recognition Act 2004 to allow individuals to change their legal gender without unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles, for example the intrusive medical tests currently required.”

SNP: “The SNP Scottish Government is committed to reviewing and reforming gender recognition laws, in line with international best practice. SNP MPs will press the UK government to match the Scottish Government’s commitment to legislation within this parliament.”

UKIP: Not included.

Green: “We would update the Gender Recognition Act to allow trans youth and non-binary people to get legal recognition through selfdeclaration.”

Global LGBT rights:

Conservatives: “We will continue to champion British values around the globe: freedom, democracy, tolerance and the rule of law. We will expand our global efforts to combat extremism, terror, and the perpetration of violence against people because of their faith, gender or sexuality.”

Labour: “We will appoint dedicated global ambassadors for women’s rights, LGBT rights and religious freedom to fight discrimination and promote equality globally.”

Liberal Democrats: “We will develop a comprehensive strategy for promoting the decriminalisation of homosexuality around the world and advancing the cause of LGBT+ rights.”

SNP: “SNP MPs will support the establishment of a special envoy to promote the rights of LGBTI people throughout the world, as an integral part of UK foreign policy – helping to alleviate the discrimination and persecution faced by LGBTI people in Chechnya and across the world.”

UKIP: Not included

Green: “The Green Party would push for action on LGBTIQA+ rights globally by challenging criminalisation, discrimination and violence against LGBTIQA+ people in other countries and working in solidarity with campaigners there. [The Green Party would] deploy sanctions against regimes that violate international human rights standards.”

HIV-preventing drugs (PrEP): 

Conservatives: Not included

Labour: “We will ensure all frontline health and social care professionals receive ongoing training to understand and meet the needs of LGBT patients and service users. Labour will ensure that NHS England completes the trial programme to provide PrEP as quickly as possible, and fully roll out the treatment to high-risk groups to help reduce HIV infection.”

Liberal Democrats: “We will make Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV prevention available on the NHS.”

SNP: “Scotland is the first of the UK nations to approve the provision of Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) by the NHS to prevent HIV. We will support efforts to have PrEP made available on the
NHS in the rest of the UK too.”

UKIP: Not included

Green: “The Green Party would “ensure PrEP – a daily pill which prevents HIV infection – is provided by NHS England without delay.”

Ban on blood donation by men who have sex with men

Conservatives: Not included

Labour: Not included

Liberal Democrats: “We will ask the Advisory Committee on Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs periodically to review rules around men who have sex with men and other related groups donating blood to consider what restrictions remain necessary.”

SNP: Not included

UKIP: Not included

Green: “The Green Party would push for consultation on reducing the 12-month blood donation deferral period for men who have sex with men.”

Non-binary recognition

Conservatives: Not included

Labour: Not included

Liberal Democrats: “We will introduce an ‘X’ option on passports, identity documents, and official forms for those who do not wish to identify as either male or female, and campaign for their introduction in the provision of other services, for example utilities.”

SNP: Not included

UKIP: Not included

Green: “The Green Party would campaign for an X gender marker to be added to passports for non-binary and intersex people who wish to use it. The Green Party would update the Gender Recognition Act to allow trans youth and non-binary people to get legal recognition through self-declaration.”

LGBT Asylum seekers

Conservatives: “We will ensure Britain remains a place of sanctuary for refugees and asylum seekers.”

Labour: Not included

Liberal Democrats: “We will offer asylum to people fleeing countries where their sexual orientation or gender identification means that they risk imprisonment, torture or execution, and stop deporting people at risk to such countries.”

SNP: “There needs to be reform to the detention and asylum system for LGBTI individuals escaping countries where homosexuality is still criminalised, removing unfair and invasive demands for
‘proof’ of sexuality or gender identity.”

UKIP: “UKIP will comply fully with the 1951 UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, and honour our obligations to bona fide asylum seekers.”

Green: “The Green Party would instigate an immediate moratorium on deportation of LGBTIQA+ refugees until the system is reformed. The Green Party would instigate the end of detention of refugees waiting for their claims to be processed.”

Any unique promises?

Conservative: Not included

Labour: “A Labour government will enhance the powers and functions of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, making it truly independent, to ensure it can support ordinary working people to effectively challenge any discrimination they may face.”

Liberal Democrats: “Extend the Equality Act to all large companies with more than 250 employees, requiring them to monitor and publish data on gender, BAME, and LGBT+ employment levels and pay gaps.”

SNP: “SNP MPs will vote for a change in the Equality Act to strengthen and change the law that currently allows employers to have different dress codes for men and women.”

UKIP: “In Britain, we do not believe in treating women or gay people as second-class citizens, and we hold to a fundamental belief in democracy and free speech. UKIP’s points-based immigration system will therefore include one further major principle: we will test the social attitudes of migration applicants to foster community cohesion and protect core British values.”

Green: “Use the International Court of Justice and International Criminal Court to prosecute regimes that commit injustices against LGBTIQA+ citizens.”

Check out the manifestos here:

Conservatives

Labour

Liberal Democrats

SNP

Green

And check out Stonewall’s LGBT manifesto here

Related: Find out what our PinkNews poll suggests about how LGBT people will be voting…

More: Conservative, Equality, general election, General Election 2017, Green, Labour, Law, LGBT, liberal democrat, manifesto, SNP, Tory, UKIP

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