>> Ukip banned from gay pride march after party’s inclusion stokes anger
Les organisateurs de l’événement ont décidé de ne pas laisser l’Ukip intégrer la célèbre parade. Le parti populiste et anti-européen ne défilera donc pas le 27 juin prochain dans les rues de Londres, Glasgow ou encore Manchester.
Selon les responsable de la gay pride, il ne s’agit pour autant pas d’une décision politique. « Notre but est d’unir notre communauté, pas de la diviser (…). Exclure un groupe n’est donc pas une décision que nous prenons à la légère », soulignent-ils dans un communiqué. « Nous avons fait ce choix après mûre réflexion, dans le but de protéger les participants, et nous assurer que tout se passera sans risque, et dans le bon esprit. Ce n’est pas pour une raison politique ».
Une décision qui ne convainc évidemment pas l’Ukip. Le parti populiste, pour qui ce choix marque « un triste jour pour la diversité et la liberté, a souligné que plusieurs de ses membres étaient des militants LGBT. Flo Lewis, l’un d’entre eux, s’est avoué très déçu, souhaitant rappeler que « chacun, quelles que soient ses croyances, sa couleur de peau ou son orientation sexuelle est bienvenu » dans son parti, relaye le Guardian.
Cependant, si le leader d’Ukip, Nigel Farage, est également revenu sur sa position concernant le mariage gay, difficile en revanche d’oublier les nombreux dérapages homophobes au sein de son parti. En 2013, un candidat soutenu par le parti avait par exemple qualifié les homosexuels de « bandits du cul ». La même année, un membre de l’Ukip avait expliqué le déclenchement de catastrophes naturelles par le vote de la loi pour le mariage homosexuel. Beaucoup moins gay friendly, d’un coup
Avec Félix Dupont
>> Ukip has been banned from one of Britain’s biggest gay pride parades in an apparent U-turn by organisers who say they are worried about the safety of participants.
The inclusion of Ukip in the original lineup of the Pride in London march set for 27 June had been controversial.
Many in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community spoke out against the involvement of the party, which has been linked to a string of allegedly homophobic controversies.
Following the creation of a petition calling for the party to be banned, Pride organisers said they had rejected Ukip’s application to take part on safety grounds. Organisers said the decision was not politically motivated.
A Pride spokesman said: “Over the last few days we, both as individuals and the volunteer directors of Pride, have had to wrestle with a difficult issue – whether to include a group from Ukip in this year’s Pride in London Parade.
“We aim to unite our community, not divide it, and our intention is to serve the whole of our community with an inclusive event, so to exclude any group is not a decision we take lightly.
“For this year we have reached the decision that Ukip’s application to join the Pride in London parade on 27 June 2015 will be turned down.
“This decision has been made after careful consultation in order to protect participants and ensure the event passes off safely and in the right spirit. It has not been made on a political basis.
“We appreciate many in our community have strongly held views about Ukip, their policies and comments, but it is undeniable that there are LGBT members of Ukip, including their MEP for Scotland [David Coburn], and it is important to remember that Pride in London aims to be an inclusive event.
Ukip MEP David Coburn banned from Wikipedia indefinitely
“However, of paramount concern to us is the experience of all participants at Pride, most especially the position we would be putting our volunteer stewards in.”
Ukip said said the decision marked “a sad day for diversity and freedom” and disputed organisers’ version of events, saying the party had not had its application turned down but instead organisers had withdrawn their original invitation.
Flo Lewis, the chair of LGBT in Ukip, said: “The board of Pride in London have not decided to reject our application. Instead they have decided to rescind the invitation under threats from and complaints by other members of the LGBT community.
“We should, I think, be very sorry that this decision has been made, equally we are sorry that the organising committee and board has been put under the sort of pressure it has over the past few days.
“All people, regardless of creed, colour or sexual orientation, can find a home in Ukip. It is a sad day for diversity and freedom when these people are prohibited from expressing themselves as part of the wider community.”
Nigel Farage, the Ukip leader, reversed the party’s position on same-sex marriage before the general election, saying he would not seek to overturn its legalisation. But the party has not been able to shake off allegations of homophobia.
Alongside that decision came a commitment to give legal protection in the workplace to religious people who opposed same-sex marriage because of their beliefs, which would apply to cases such as the Northern Irish bakery found guilty of discrimination after declining an order for a cake bearing a pro-gay marriage slogan.
Numerous Ukip members have also been caught up in homophobia scandals, including a councillor who blamed the winter floods of 2013-14 on the passage of same-sex marriage laws.
More recently the party appeared to defend election candidate Geoffrey Caton who described gay people as “arse bandits”, saying he had changed his views since posting them in 2013.
In December last year, Ukip election candidate Kerry Smith resigned after describing gay people as “fucking disgusting old poofters”.
In 2012, serial election candidate Winston McKenzie was reported to have said it would not be “healthy” for children to be adopted by gay couples.