Govt appoints former gay rights leader to EHRC

The Government has appointed a prominent homosexual rights advocate as Chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

David Isaac, who spent almost ten years chairing Stonewall, will begin his new role in the coming weeks.

The move has intensified calls to overhaul existing legislation on equality, which critics say has created a hierarchy of rights.

Gay marriage

The appointment of Isaac was announced in a letter from Education Secretary Nicky Morgan to Harriet Harman MP, who chairs the Joint Committee on Human Rights.

Morgan wrote that Isaac is her “preferred candidate” and set out his record while at Stonewall.

Under his chairmanship, she said, Stonewall “successfully lobbied to secure major legislative change, including the abolition of section 28, the introduction of civil partnerships and gay marriage”.


Commenting on the appointment, Conservative Home Editor Paul Goodman criticised the way equality legislation operates in the UK.

He argued that existing legislation “avoids spelling out” what happens if the rights of one group, such as Christians, clash with the rights of another, such as homosexuals.

According to Goodman, this results in the courts “being left to pick up the pieces”.

He added: “If voters want the sexual orientation strand to have priority over the religion strand – or vice-versa for that matter – that is a matter which Parliament should debate and decide. The legislation needs an overhaul.”