Sole MP blocks better schooling

After a long debate about relationship and sex education, it looked like the House of Commons would finally agree a way forward today. Then Philip Davies, an MP who had not bothered to attend the debate, walked in and registered an objection, delaying the bill. In a way it was not a surprise as Davies has a track record of voting against measures that improve LGBT people’s human rights and reduce our health challenges.

The relationship and sex education reforms will return to the Commons soon – most likely next Wednesday, though with the ongoing Brexit chaos at present it feels hard to be sure what parliament will be doing from one day to the next.

Elsewhere his fellow MP Andrea Leadsom whipped up a media storm while talking about the reforms, declaring that “parents should be able to choose the moment at which their children become exposed to” the existence of LGBT people. In an age where many school playgrounds will have children growing up with openly bi, gay or trans parents, “exposed to” is a remarkably charged choice of language.

In recent times the ability of sole MPs to block legislation and frustrate the will of Parliament has been highlighted as Conservative backbencher Christopher Chope blocked legislation to ban ‘upskirting’ – causing enough public outcry that additional parliamentary time was found and the legislation eventually passed despite him.

We look forward to Davies being similarly frustrated at the earliest opportunity, because there are hundreds of thousands of children out there who need the support and protection he is trying to deny them.