UKIP would scrap the Minister for Equalities

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

UKIP would scrap the role of Minister for Women and Equalities, it has been announced.

UKIP MEP Janice Atkinson – who famously referred to an Asian woman as a “ting-tong from somewhere” – made the pledge in a speech to the Spring Party Conference in Margate.

Ms Atkinson, who is the party’s PPC in Folkestone and Hythe, announced that a UKIP government would “not be having a Minister for Women and Equalities”, to rapturous applause from party members.

It is unclear whether the plans mean the party would also entirely abolish the Government Equalities Office – which is responsible for policy on women, sexual orientation and transgender equality.

Elsewhere at the conference, Patricia Culligan, who is the PPC for Eastleigh, announced that UKIP would entirely scrap sex and relationship education for under-11s – flying in the face of a recommendation from MPs to introduce statutory, inclusive SRE.

The moves come after the head of the party’s LGBT group quit, citing the “failure of the leadership” to set a “gay-friendly tone”.

Tom Booker, who had chaired LGBTQ* in UKIP, said: “I found that I couldn’t defend the party or convincingly campaign for it any more.”

Yesterday, the head of UKIP’s youth wing hit out at “tokenism”, saying: “We don’t target any small minority because that’s not the way we operate as a party.

“We’re not a party of tokens.”