You are not logged in. Signup to contribute or login! Not recieved your activation email? Click here to send it again.

Clause 28 (also known as Section 28) enacted

May 1988

of the Local Government Act (also known as ) became law on 24 May 1988 requiring that... 'A local government shall not intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality' or 'promote the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship'

Background to the introduction of Clause 28

The 1980s were turbulent years politically in the UK. While manufacturing industry was being decimated by the government's policies, causing mass unemployment and clashes with the unions, the more socially conservative elements in her government were looking at the ever more vocal gay rights lobby with alarm. The anti-gay hysteria whipped up by the irresponsible British press during the early years of the crisis gave them the excuse they needed to attack gay rights. A letter from the London Borough of Haringay's Lesbian and Gay Unit to all head teachers in the borough urging them to promote positive images of homosexuality to their pupils, is often cited as the final straw.

A vicious backlash was provoked and was born. Using the review of the Local Government Act as a vehicle, Birmingham Edgbaston MP a traditional right-winger, sponsored an amendment initially Clause 27 but later or . It was initially a blow to the gay rights cause, but together with the response to the crisis it served to galvanise the disparate gay rights movement into action and heralded a massive politicisation of the gay community. es and demonstration rallies were held throughout the country, most notably in in February 1988 and London the following month, both attended by a contingent. The response to the Clause also triggered the birth of national groups including and !.

The repeal of Clause 28 was promised by in his pre-1997 election campaign but it was not actually repealed until 18 November 2003, although it had become redundant long before due to the Education Act 1996.

Jill Knight left parliament in 1992 and was made Dame for her services to Great Britain!

Have a memory of this? Signup today and tell us about it! or login!