UK

SNP MP: ‘Why was group which called me a rape-enabler given lottery cash?’

QUESTIONS have been raised over why “transphobic” group was given lottery money despite sending vitriolic abuse to MPs.

SNP MP John Nicolson interrogated the government minister with oversight on the National Lottery Community Fund about the LGB Alliance being awarded £9000 despite sending him vitriolic abuse.

He said the group, which has campaigned against trans rights issues such as gender recognition reform, branded him a “paedophile” and “rape-enabler”, during a committee session on Tuesday.

The Ochil and North Perthshire MP has spoken against the group in the past and previously asked for the House of Commons security team to be on alert after he and Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner received online abuse from the group.

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Earlier this year, the LGB Alliance was awarded £9000 in lottery funding to help pay for an advice line serving lesbian, gay and bisexual young people.

Chris Philp, the junior minister responsible for lotteries, was quizzed by the SNP MP over the award, which he described as “inappropriate”.

Nicolson said: “The so-called LGB Alliance, which the Speaker referred to Commons security because of its abusive record, of sending abusive tweets to members of parliament including me, of the most egregious type…has just been given a grant to fund a helpline for young people.

“I can’t think of a less appropriate organisation, it’s got age verification on some of its tweets because they’re so abusive and it’s been taken off the country’s two largest funding sites because it’s regarded as a hate organisation.”

The group was dropped by fundraising giants JustGiving and GoFundMe for breaking the rules of both sites.

He asked Philp if it “seems appropriate” for the group to have been given public funding.

“I’m aware of this case,” the minister said. “This was a grant made by the National Lottery Community Fund and it was given to the LGB Alliance.

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“The size of the grant was £9000 and it was to scope out the advice service for lesbian, gay and bisexual young people aged between 13 and 25.

“We have raised this issue for the reason that you’ve mentioned, we’ve been assured by the grant-making body, in this case the National Lottery Community Fund, which is an arms-length body – they make the decisions not the government.

“We’ve been assured that their decision-making process was in line with their policies and procedures.”

Nicolson said he believed there had been a “lack of due diligence” in the award being given, something the minister said he suspected “may be right”.

Philp promised he would write to the National Lotter to inquire as to why the money was awarded.

The LGB Alliance was founded in 2019 and was given charity status in 2021 despite a petition garnering more than 30,000 signatures opposing the move.

The organisation is opposed to outlawing trans conversion therapy – the equivalent of gay conversion therapy which attempts to make gay people straight and has been compared to torture by LGBT activists.

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In their appeal against the organisation being given charity status, trans youth charity Mermaids described the LGB Alliance as “transphobic”.

Their attempts – supported by the Good Law Project – were ultimately unsuccessful.

The group was also found to have breached Twitter’s hate speech policy when it suggested adding a plus sign to the end of the term LGBT would give the impression the movement was inclusive of “paraphilias like bestiality”. 

A National Lottery spokesman said: “We can confirm that we have awarded LGB Alliance with a £9,000 National Lottery Awards for All grant for a project to scope the need, feasibility, constituent elements and operating parameters of a national advice service for lesbian, gay and bisexual young people aged 13 – 25.

“We are satisfied that this project meets our eligibility criteria for funding.”

The LGB Alliance was approached for comment.



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