AN MP has dismissed claims he blocked a bid to make the teaching of gay, lesbian and transgender issues compulsory in state-funded schools.
Havant MP Alan Mak was one of the Tories who made lengthy speeches about the Merchant Shipping Bill brought by John Glen, designed to abolish the fact a member of the Merchant Navy can be dismissed for acts of homosexuality on a vessel.
This left Green Party co-leader Caroline Lucas with little time to talk about her draft legislation in the Commons.
She said: ‘Although I completely support the bill that preceded mine, there is an irony that has not gone unnoticed. Members have spent hours debating a wholly uncontroversial bill, while mine is about tackling discrimination and bullying around lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues. It is a great shame that there is not more time to debate it.’
Mr Mak said: ‘The issue I spoke about is not acceptable in a modern society, and is of relevance to the Havant area, which has a proud maritime tradition.
‘I understand Ms Lucas is disappointed, but that is because her bill had no MPs prepared to speak for it other than her, whereas John Glen’s bill had 10.’