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Liz Truss promoted to foreign secretary and remains equalities minister despite LGBT+ failings

Lily Wakefield September 15, 2021
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Liz Truss leaves Downing Street

Britain's newly appointed Britain's Foreign Secretary Liz Truss leaves from 10 Downing Street on 15 September, 2021. (AFP via Getty/ DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS)

Liz Truss has also been promoted to foreign secretary in Boris Johnson’s cabinet reshuffle, while retaining her role as minister for women and equalities.

Truss was seen entering 10 Downing Street on Wednesday (15 September), and in a tweet Downing Street later confirmed: The Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP has been appointed Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs.

“She remains as Minister for Women and Equalities.”

 

Truss, who was trade secretary, replaces outgoing foreign secretary Dominic Raab, who has faced immense pressure over his actions during the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban.

He is now justice secretary and deputy prime minister – a role last filled by Nick Clegg during the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition.

The news of Truss’ promotion comes amid continued criticism over her approach to LGBT+ rights.

In May this year, the government’s own LGBT Advisory Panel collapsed after several members resigned, accusing the Conservatives of creating a “hostile environment” for LGBT+ people in the UK.

Truss told MPs that the LGBT Advisory Panel was disbanded after a “fundamental disagreement” over members’ support for gender recognition law reforms.

During the same month, she indicated the government may be dropping its long-promised LGBT Action Plan, insisting that delivering the pledges laid out in 2018 was no longer a “priority”.

Under Truss, the Government Equalities Office has scrapped all plans to reform the “dehumanising” gender recognition process, despite polling clearly showing that the majority of the British public supports it.

Left-wing activist George Aylett wrote on Twitter: “Remember when Liz Truss dismissed concerns over the current demeaning bureaucratic process trans people have to go through right now?

“She said ID reform was ‘not the top priority for transgender people’ despite trans people saying otherwise and overwhelming calls for self ID… Liz Truss is a disgrace.”

Kobe Bibbon, trans rep for Young Liberals, the youth and student wing of the Lib Dems, tweeted: “It in an insult to trans, non-binary and gender diverse people across the country that Liz Truss remains minister for women and equalities.

“The Tories anti-trans agenda allows flames of transphobia to raise even higher. Young Liberals will keep fighting hard for trans rights.”

On Truss’ appointment, Phyll Opoku-Gyimah (Lady Phyll), executive director of Kaleidoscope Trust, told PinkNews: “Kaleidoscope Trust has an on-going and important relationship with [the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office] and we appreciate the immense work the department has put into supporting efforts to uphold LGBT+ human rights across the Commonwealth and the world to date.

“Now more than ever, it is important for an inclusive vision and clear priorities for the department to be set out, in order to ensure that the UK continues to set the standard for this important work on the international stage.

“As civil society co-chairs of the Equal Rights Coalition and as Secretariat of The Commonwealth Equality Network, Kaleidoscope Trust looks forward to hearing more and seeing action, particularly in light of the uncertainty faced by LGBT+ organisations and communities around the world.”

British Labour Party politician Marsha de Cordova quit her role on the opposition frontbench as shadow women and equalities minister on Tuesday (14 September).

Announcing her departure from the shadow cabinet, she said the decision was made with “much sadness”.

Sources told LabourList that her resignation has “absolutely nothing to do with trans rights”.

Related topics: liz truss

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