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Response to Behind the Aegis (Original post)

Wed Jul 3, 2019, 02:57 AM

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Newham Labour Party member shares homophobic content online which 'drives LGBT+ children to suicide

A group of LGBT+ councillors say they no longer 'feel safe' after a Labour Party member shared a video online calling for Muslims to stand against sex education plans.


In a series of messages on social media Cllr Joshua Garfield slams the Newham Labour member for sharing content which "drives LGBT+ children to suicide and fuels bigotry and hate crime". Josephine Grahl, chairman of West Ham Labour, resigned following a meeting of members last night. In a statement she said: "The exhausting experience of chairing a set of increasingly hostile meetings has taken a personal toll.

"If there is a time when the left ought to be generous, confident and open it is surely now. "I have no intention of continuing to preside over a battleground." On the LGBT+ members' complaints, Cllr Garfield tweeted: "While members share homophobic content online [and] incite hostility towards the LGBT+ community, we cannot feel safe at @WestHamLabour meetings. "West Ham Labour has still not sorted its problem with antisemitism or misogyny. Now, another group are (sic) at risk of being ostracised".

The councillors' complaint centres around a video by Amir Ahmed who campaigns against elements of the compulsory teaching of relationships in primaries, and sex education in secondaries, changes due to start in 2020. Under the plans parents will not have a right to withdraw their children from primary school lessons on relationships. The government expects secondaries to teach pupils about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) relationships while primaries are "enabled and encouraged" to cover this "if they consider it age appropriate".

The video was posted on Tuesday, captioned "#Newham it's time to listen" and shared by the Labour member.

In it Mr Ahmed calls on "brothers and uncles" to stand with opponents of RSE and join the campaign "fighting for the survival of our traditional family values and the welfare of our children and our future generations". He says: "We as a community need to stand up, stand together, raise our voices and be heard." Cllr Rohit Dasgupta, who is openly gay, commented: "It's a worrying trend."

But in a further development, at a West Ham Labour meeting on Thursday, Cllr Dasgupta was stripped of his role as West Ham Labour's LGBT+ officer and replaced by someone he described as "a straight white man".

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