LGBT lobby group Stonewall says it will scrap guidance saying organisations should replace the word ‘mother’ with a gender-neutral alternative.
During an interview on BBC Radio Four’s Woman’s Hour, presenter Emma Barnett highlighted that the Scottish Government had been advised to make such changes by Stonewall.
The lobby group’s CEO Nancy Kelley denied it gave such advice, but separate correspondence from Stonewall to the Scottish Government and the University of Dundee proved it had recommended removing terms including ‘father and mother’ from their policies.
The revelation came to light after the University of Dundee, a participant in Stonewall’s discredited Diversity Champions scheme, asked why it was scoring so poorly on the group’s Workplace Equality Index, which measures how ‘LGBT-friendly’ an employer is.
In an email, Stonewall said that in order to score more points and improve its ranking: “We recommend that you remove the terms mother and father from the body of your policies”.
When confronted, Stonewall announced it would change the policy, and claimed that the guidance given to the University was outdated and no longer in use.
We recommend that you remove the terms mother and father from the body of your policies.
However, the University confirmed that it had already implemented the group’s advice.
During her interview, Kelley was also challenged on whether Harry Potter author JK Rowling was ‘transphobic’ for stating her ‘gender critical’ views online.
Although the CEO did admit that such views are protected in law, she complained: “I think as the CEO of Stonewall, that she has expressed some views that can cause real harm”.
Stonewall has seen a number of organisations leave its Diversity Champions scheme this year, with the BBC among the latest to depart.