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House of Commons Hansard
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05 September 2018
Volume 646
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6. What steps she is taking to help promote LGBT rights in Northern Ireland. [906645]

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This Government have a strong track record of promoting and supporting LGBT rights across the United Kingdom, including equal marriage. I was proud to demonstrate this support by having the rainbow flag flown from Stormont House last month to mark Belfast Pride.

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But flags are not enough. On everything from mental health to civil rights, LGBT people in Northern Ireland are worse off than those in the rest of the UK, but groups I met recently say they get no funding from the Assembly or from Westminster, and there was nothing in the Government’s LGBT action plan. Will the Secretary of State consider the creation of a discretionary fund to ensure these groups get the support they need, particularly while there is no functioning Assembly?

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I will look at the hon. Gentleman’s point. I have met many groups representing LGBT interests in Northern Ireland, but many of these matters are devolved and they should quite rightly be resolved by the devolved Government in Stormont.

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10. One day I hope to marry my beautiful boyfriend, and I can do that because I live in England where civil partnerships and equal marriage are legal. When will couples like me and Sydney who live in Northern Ireland be able to set a date so they can marry? [906649]

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We are all looking forward to the day, and I congratulate the hon. Gentleman. I voted for same-sex marriage to be legal in my own constituency, and I am very proud that I did that, but it is right that these matters are dealt with by the devolved Government. [Interruption.] That is why we need a devolved Government in Stormont—so that we can resolve these issues. [Interruption.]

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Order. Members are making far too much noise in the Chamber. I am quite sure it is not something I would ever have done as a Back-Bench Member, and I am sure the House wishes to hear the hon. Member for Vauxhall (Kate Hoey)—and that is what it is going to do anyway.