03 September 2013
Stonewall report shows LGBT discrimination still widespread
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people across the UK have seen substantial progress on a number of 'pink' issues in the last few months.
But while the House of Parliament finally passed a motion that will see LGBT marriages come into law before the end of 2015, societal views still lag behind and cause problems in the day-to-day lives of many gay Britons.
A new report by Stonewall, a LGBT rights charity, sheds light on this and outlines some of the problems faced by gay UK residents.
Some 2,092 lesbian, gay and bisexual adults from across England, Scotland and Wales were asked about their views on a number of matters and it was found many believe discrimination is rife.
For example, when asked if they would face barriers because of their gender if they stood for a political party, some 74 per cent commented they thought they would if they wanted to become a Conservative MP.
This is in contrast to 37 per cent who thought this would be a problem if they wished to represent Labour at parliamentary level, with the Liberal Democrats coming in at 29 per cent.
The most progressive party in this regard are the Greens, as only 17 per cent thought their LGBT status would be a problem for the eco-friendly campaigners.
Worst achieving was the British National Party, with 97 per cent fearing some form of discrimination if they joined the far-right group.
But it isn't just in the political field where LGBT Britons face perceived barriers.
Some 24 per cent said they thought they would be treated worse by police officers if they reported a homophobic hate crime when compared to a heterosexual person, while 18 per cent predicted poor treatment at the hands of a crown court judge.
Stonewall chief executive Ben Summerskill said: "Completion of our work on marriage means that one strand of Stonewall's domestic focus - legislative equality - is effectively complete. But this polling demonstrates starkly that changing laws doesn’t change attitudes and lives overnight."
By Chris Stevenson