UKIP youth leader attacks ‘tokenism’ in other parties

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

The leader of UKIP’s youth wing has hit out at “tokenism” – after the head of his party’s LGBT group quit.

The chair of LGBTQ* in UKIP, Tom Booker, quit this week and renounced his party membership – citing “dissatisfaction at the failure of the leadership to set a gay-friendly tone”.

Today, the leader of the party’s ‘Young Independence’ wing said he was “proud” of the way UKIP has dealt with a string of anti-gay candidates.

Jack Duffin, who heads the group, told IBTimes: “When we see these problems we deal with them. These stories happen to all parties.

“I’m proud of UKIP because we deal with these issues and don’t hide them in our membership and wait for the media to get hold of them.

“We promote issues across the board, we don’t target any small group or anything but we work with them.

“We don’t target any small minority because that’s not the way we operate as a party.

“You’ll never seen an all-woman shortlist in UKIP because we value everyone on what they bring to the table. We’re not a party of tokens.

“Young people in other parties are just a token – they’re just used to go leafleting.”

Mr Duffin is the party’s current PPC in Uxbridge & South Ruislip – where Boris Johnson is standing for the Conservatives.

Flo Lewis, the new head of UKIP’s LGBT group, said:  “I hope to not only educate the members of UKIP about LGBT* issues and concerns but also challenge the perceptions the LGBT* community have regarding UKIP.”