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Veterans: LGBT+ People

Question for Ministry of Defence

UIN 21948, tabled on 24 June 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will issue letters of apology to all LGBT+ veterans who suffered significant (a) emotional and (b) financial hardship as a result of the former Armed Forces ban on homosexuality.

Answered on

29 June 2021

My predecessor as Minister for Defence People and Veterans publicly apologised for the historic treatment of the LGBT veteran community and I reiterate that this treatment was entirely unacceptable. LGBT personnel have made, and continue to make, significant contributions to the Armed Forces.

I am proud of this Government’s record on improving equality. We made it possible for men with eligible historical convictions for decriminalised behaviours to apply to have their convictions disregarded and we are in the process of exploring how further Service Offences can be brought within the scope of the scheme to enable more veterans to benefit from it.

We have stated that we will go beyond existing actions in righting historic wrongs to the LGBT veteran community and I remain committed to doing so. Work is underway which will seek not only to understand and acknowledge the impacts of pre-millennium practices in the Armed Forces relating to gender identity and sexual orientation, but also where appropriate to address these impacts. We do not currently have plans to identify individuals.

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