Labour has been accused of discriminating against straight white men.
The opposition party billed Young Labour’s Equalities Conference as a ‘one-day event’ for disabled, LGBT, women and black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) members.
On an invite to members, white heterosexual men are not listed as eligible to apply to attend the event, planned to take place on March 17 in central London.
Labour has since denied the event was discriminatory and said equalities representatives for the youth faction’s National Committee would be elected at the meeting.
Conservatives were quick to jump on the invite omission, with Mansfield MP Ben Bradley saying the Equality Conference ‘doesn’t sound too equal to me’.
After the 'cheaper tickets for BME' fiasco a few weeks ago @UKLabour @YoungLabourUK now saying no straight white men allowed at their Equalities Conference! Doesn't sound too equal to me! #LabourFail pic.twitter.com/pyKheHqrPX
— Ben Bradley MP (@bbradleymp) February 11, 2018
Does this mean that no white heterosexual men are allowed to go to Young Labour's EQUALITIES Conference? pic.twitter.com/5zIBeqBd7u
— Carrie Symonds (@carriesymonds) February 11, 2018
While James Cleverly, deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, said: ‘This is yet another example of discrimination by Labour.
‘Their lazy assumption that straight white men can’t fight for equality is shocking. It is essential that political parties represent each and every person irrespective of race, sexuality or age.
‘The Labour Party should take action now to ensure that this discrimination comes to an end.’
A Labour spokeswoman said: ‘There is nothing new about spaces for people with protected characteristics meeting to discuss the inequalities and obstacles they face.
‘The purpose of this conference is to ensure that members from disadvantaged groups are able to elect representatives to Young Labour’s National Committee.
‘All other positions on the Committee are elected online, via a ‘one member, one vote’ system.’
Will no-one think of the straight white men?!!?11
This is a conference to elect the BAME, disabled, LGBT and Women's Officers. If you don't fall into any of those categories, what would be the point in attending? Cool it with the faux outrage and get a hobby pal. https://t.co/k6Qdms9dbq
— Young Labour Women (@YoungLabWomen) February 11, 2018
And the Young Labour Women group suggested people ‘cool it with the faux outrage’.
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The positions of women’s, BAME, disabled, and LGBT+ representative will be elected at the Young Labour conference.
Heterosexual white men are not eligible to vote in the elections, as rules state only women can vote for the women’s representative and only LGBT members can vote for the LGBT officer.
The election of equalities representatives cannot take place online as Labour does not have the relevant data on members’ identities.
Most other positions on the National Committee are voted for using an online ballot.
The criticism comes just two weeks after Labour were slammed for suggesting white attendees pay a premium for an event in Loughborough.