Current Affairs

Amber Rudd quits as Home Secretary, but who will become the next Women and Equalities minister?

Jasmine Andersson April 30, 2018
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(Getty)

Amber Rudd has resigned as Home Secretary after she “inadvertently misled” parliament when she denied her knowledge of a deportation increase target that contributed to the Windrush scandal.

Submitting her resignation letter to Prime Minister Theresa May on Sunday evening, Rudd stated that she had not been aware of a 10 percent deportation target increase which has seen several Windrush migrants from Commonwealth countries declared illegal immigrants by the Home Office.

“I should have been aware of this, and I take full responsibility that I was not,” she wrote in the letter.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd and Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May (R) make their way to meet Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police Ian Hopkins on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England. (Leon Neal/Getty)

Rudd’s decision will also directly affect the LGBT+ community, as her resignation makes her the third cabinet minister to leave the equalities chief role in the past two years.

Rudd, who took over the minister for women and equalities role in January, has been responsible for policy on women, policy on sexual orientation and transgender equality and cross-government equality strategy and legislation.

Although plans to update the Gender Recognition Act fell under her remit, the review seems to have taken a standstill in recent months.

Rudd’s predecessor Justine Greening introduced plans to “demedicalise” and shorten the process for trans people to legally change their gender in July 2017.

Theresa May showed her support for the reform in the opening speech of the PinkNews Awards in 2017, declaring that “being trans is not an illness and it should not be treated as such.”

Theresa May at the PinkNews Awards

Rudd has also been responsible for the implementation of an LGBT+ inclusive sex education, which Education Secretary Damian Hinds has shelved amid pressure from faith groups.

Former equalities minister Greening urged the government to continue with plans to make sex education in schools LGBT+ inclusive after she was sacked in January.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has also called for the government to review sex education in schools as it was last updated in 2000.

Rudd was due to speak at PinkNews’ Westminster summer reception about LGBT+ equality, and recently penned a piece for PinkNews to rally for LGBT+ inclusivity in the Commonwealth.

Rudd also announced that the UK government will fund a £5.6 million programme to assist Commonwealth countries in reforming LGBT+ law.

“We must continue to work together across different countries, communities, ethnicities, faith and political affiliations to achieve a common goal; equality for all people, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity,” wrote Rudd in the op-ed.

Related topics: Amber Rudd, equalities minister, home secretary, Minister for Women and Equalities, Windrush scandal

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