In their desire to cling to power over our country, Theresa May and her party have made a deal with the DUP (Democratic Unionist Party).
Known for their moral conservativism, the DUP pose a genuine threat to the hard won rights of LGBT people and woman. This is truly terrifying.
We have seen real progress on LGBT rights in recent years but whilst gains have been made in terms of marriage equality and adoption rights, there is still some way to go. The life for many LGBT people remains difficult. The Stonewall school report of 2012 showed that nearly one in four young LGBT people have attempted suicide and over half have self-harmed. More recently, Pride in London’s research showed that 74 per cent of LGBT people hide their sexual orientation or gender identity, with 77 per cent feeling uncomfortable in being their true selves in public (against 23 per cent of the general population).
Likewise, women’s rights in the UK are more protected than ever before. Despite this, gender inequality persists in many ways. The British Council has stated that the UK must make this issue a priority since we are falling behind nations like the US and France. In the UK, women hold less than 30% of positions of power and influence. Women experience higher levels of sexual, physical and online abuse. They are paid significantly less (18.1% in 2016) to do the same job. They are objectified and vilified in the media.
The DUP want to roll back LGBT and women’s rights. Most of them deny climate change. Many of them believe that the earth is 6000 years old. Theresa May has sold us out to bigots. Over the weekend, following pressure from her own MPs, she has given some vague assurances that LGBT rights will be protected but how can we possibly believe the queen of the U-turns? Women’s rights remain the elephant in the room, with no such assurance, however tenuous to cling onto. This is truly terrifying.