Equalities Minster Ruth Kelly is once again in the media spotlight after the Independent on Sunday reported she is attempting to exempt Roman Catholic adoption agencies from new laws banning homophobic discrimination.
Mrs Kelly is still reeling from accusations of hypocrisy after deciding to place her child who has special educational needs in a private school having presided over a policy of integrating such children into mainstream classes whilst Education Secretary.
Earlier last year she faced calls to resign over her apparent stance on gay rights. Speaking at the time Lorely Burt MP, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Women and Equality, told MayorWatch: “People in our society who hold religious beliefs should enjoy no special status above people with secular beliefs. We should never enshrine one as superior to another in law, which essentially is what is being proposed.”
Fueling the debate over devolution the Scotland on Sunday newspaper reports the Minister is seeking to make her exemptions UK-wide requiring the overturning of recent laws passed by the Scottish Executive.
The paper quotes an SNP spokesman as saying “whatever one thinks of the issue itself, it is clear Westminster should not be able to overrule the Scottish Parliament on a subject where MSPs have made their views perfectly clear.”
Asked about the reports the Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer told BBC One’s Sunday AM: “We have introduced laws which prevent discrimination against people on the basis of their sexual orientation; those laws should be given full effect.
“We do take the view in this country that you shouldn’t be discriminated against on that basis and think that applies to everybody, whatever your religion.”