‘Extremely encouraging support by Justice Minister on PSHE bill’, says Caroline Lucas

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Green MP Caroline Lucas has praised Liberal Democrat Justice Minister Simon Hughes for backing her Private Members’ Bill on statutory Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) Education.

Ms Lucas, Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, told PinkNews.co.uk: “The support of the Justice Minister for the bill is extremely encouraging, and I hope very much that translates to all Liberal Democrat Members being in Parliament on October 24th to vote it through.

“We have an unprecedented cross-party opportunity to make a crucial difference to the health, safety and wellbeing of our children. We know that parents across the country support this move, we know that such education has significant knock on benefits on academic attainment and future employability.

“There’s no reason to delay – we need to seize this opportunity now.”

Justice Minister Simon Hughes said he expected that Lib Dem MPs would vote in favour of the bill in a PinkNews interview.

The bill will receive its second reading on Friday 24 October.

Mr Hughes stressed that it was important to make sure the bill would not run out of parliamentary time – and that enough MPs would be in the Commons on the Friday to vote in favour.

Meanwhile, Labour MP Diane Abbott said: “There is an opportunity to get this through and I hope the Liberal Democrats are as good as their word.”

The former shadow public health minister added: “Better education about sex and relationships is vital, not just for LGBT youngsters but for all youngsters.”

In July, Labour leader Ed Miliband told PinkNews at a Labour Party business reception that he hoped all MPs would support Caroline Lucas’ bill.

Education Secretary and Minister for Women and Equalities Nicky Morgan has hinted that she could be moving towards supporting statutory PSHE.