Now Reading
Michael Gove commits UK government to helping LGBTI farmers

Michael Gove commits UK government to helping LGBTI farmers

Secretary of State for Justice: Michael Gove MP.

The UK government has thrown its support behind an initiative that supports LGBTI farmers and people living in rural areas.

This week Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Michael Gove, signed a pledge to end ‘prejudice and support rural LGBTQ+ diversity, inclusion and enablement’.

Agrespect – an organization which promotes inclusivity and support for LGBTI people in rural areas – created the pledge.

The Permanent Secretary for the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), Claire Moriarty, also signed the pledge.

‘Farming today is an innovative and progressive industry that benefits greatly from being open to all, regardless of their background, gender, religion and sexuality,’ Gove said at the pledge signing.

‘I hope that through the signing of this pledge we can further demonstrate our ongoing support for LGBTQ+ people in our rural communities.’

Farmers need help

More than 20 companies have signed the pledge including; Barclays, McDonalds and Sainsbury’s.

Agrespect was formed after a BBC Countryfile report revealed farmers and especially, LGBTI farmers have severe mental health issues. The report revealed about 50 farmers die each year after taking their own lives.

‘We want rural organisations, colleges and businesses to be welcoming places for LGBTQ+ people,’ Agrespect said on its website.

‘The rural economy needs to attract and retain the very brightest and best people.

‘Diversity leads to a better and more imaginative working and learning environment; the more perspectives we can explore, the more productive outcomes we are likely to reach. The farming community needs great new ideas now more than ever.’

If you need mental health help, click here to find a list support organizations.

More from Gay Star News

UK Government admits it’s failing LGBTI people on healthcare

UK Government could abolish civil partnerships after latest ruling

LGBTI students demand UK Government make ‘gay cure’ therapy illegal