Deal secured on Turing's Law

October 20, 2016 3:00 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Liberal Democrat peer, John Sharkey, whose Private Member's Bill was instrumental in securing a pardon for Alan Turing, has reached an agreement with the Government which will grant a posthumous pardon to thousands of gay and bisexual men convicted under long abolished sexual offence laws.

Those similarly convicted but still alive will also receive pardons if they have successfully applied for a disregard or in future successfully apply for a disregard under the Protection of Freedoms Act.

The Government will add their name to the Liberal Democrat amendment to the Policing and Crime Bill that when passed will finally grant this pardon to thousands of people.

This has been a long fought campaign for the Liberal Democrats who first raised the issue in the Houses of Parliament in the early days of Coalition Government and which has since gained momentum amongst parliamentarians from all parties.

After hearing the news, Lord Sharkey - who authored the amendment had this to say:

"This is a momentous day for thousands of families up and down the UK who have been campaigning on this issue for decades. I am very grateful for the Government's support and the support of many of my colleagues in Parliament.

It is a wonderful thing that we have been able to build on the pardon granted to Alan Turing during Coalition by extending it to the thousands of men convicted of sexual offences that existed before homosexuality was decriminalised in 1967 and which would not be crimes today."

And our leader, Tim Farron MP added:

"The Liberal Democrats continue to be the strongest voice on equality in Parliament. This was a manifesto commitment which even in opposition, thanks to the tireless work of our MPs and peers and those from other parties, we have been able to deliver on."