Liz Truss faces fresh criticism for failing to set up new LGBT+ advisory panel nearly nine months on

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  • Liz Truss
    Liz Truss
    British Conservative Party politician (born 1975)

British equalities minister Liz Truss has faced fresh criticism for failing to set up a new LGBT+ advisory panel some nine months after scrapping it.

Anneliese Dodds, Labour Party MP and shadow equalities minister, expressed her frustration at the government’s sluggish attitude to LGBT+ rights.

To Dodds, the lack of a panel to keep the government in check captures “everything you need to know about this government’s commitment to tackling the issues facing LGBT+ people”, she told The Independent.

“Liz Truss promised action on this, and yet again this government is failing to deliver.”

On top of opposition lawmakers, Truss, who first assumed the equalities office in 2019, also squared off against former members of the LGBT+ advisory panel.

Former LGBT+ adviser slams Liz Truss for ‘not delivering promises’

Jayne Ozanne, who sensationally quit the panel in March last year, sounded a harsh but optimistic tone.

She told the newspaper: “There’s sadly quite a pattern forming of this secretary of state promising things for the LGBT+ community and then not delivering in the promised time scales.

“Let’s hope this is the year that all changes.”

The LGBT+ advisory panel was set up as part of former prime minister Theresa May’s administration to offer guidance – and scrutiny – to policy-makers.

But with a pledge to ban barbaric conversion therapy gathering dust and planned reforms to the Gender Recognition Act botched, three panellists – Ozanne, James Morton and Ellen Murray – quit citing claims that the government had fostered a “hostile environment for LGBT+ people”.

The last remaining members were disbanded altogether by the end of March.

Britain’s prime minister Boris Johnson (C) walks beneath the Pride Month installation outside Number 10. (Leon Neal/Getty Images)
Britain’s prime minister Boris Johnson (C) walks beneath the Pride Month installation outside Number 10. (Leon Neal/Getty Images)

Officials did say a replacement panel would be “set out in due course” – but no moves have been publicly made to cobble a new board together, despite promises from ministers and Downing Street to do so.

A government Equality Hub spokesperson told The Indepedent: “The government is committed to promoting and realising equality for LGBT people at home and abroad.

“Over the last year, we have taken steps to improve the lives of LGBT people, including the launch of our proposals to ban conversion therapy and the modernisation of the gender recognition process.

“Later this year we will also be delivering the UK’s first global LGBT conference, Safe to Be Me: A Global Equality Conference.

“The government continues to draw on the expertise and experience from the newly created roles of Special Envoy on LGBT rights, Lord Herbert of the South Downs, and LGBT Business Champion, Iain Anderson, as well as Dr Brady, the National LGBT Health Adviser.”

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