Peter Tatchell: Pride in London position on UKIP is a ‘cop-out’

Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has slammed a “nonsense” decision by Pride in London to ban UKIP members on “safety” grounds.

Pride in London had originally defended plans for UKIP LGBT+ to take part in the parade on Saturday 27 June, claiming it would not “discriminate” against them.

However, following a backlash from campaigners including Peter Tatchell, the board reversed its decision, citing “safety” concerns if the group were allowed to march.

Speaking to LBC, Mr Tatchell said: “I don’t agree with that. It’s a nonsense to say there’s a safety issue. That is just a cop-out.

“Quite clearly the reason UKIP should not be allowed to participate is because they don’t support gay equality.”

However, despite calling for the party to be banned on LBC this afternoon – he said on Twitter yesterday: “I don’t feel entirely comfortable with UKIP Pride ban.”

Peter Tatchell: Pride in London position on UKIP is a ‘cop-out’

As members of UKIP LGBT+ have suggested they may defy organisers to march anyway, PinkNews asked Mr Tatchell whether he would support their physical removal.

He told PinkNews: “No. I would oppose UKIP being physically manhandled or arrested if they try to march.”

Earlier this year, Mr Tatchell was criticized for signing an open letter alongside anti-trans activists, condemning the “silencing of individuals” who make controversial comments about trans people.

He said at the time: “I think the best way to respond to anti-trans views is to debate and expose them. That’s why I oppose no-platforming, bans and censorship – except if a person resorts to threats, harassment or violence.”