Birmingham & Black Country

Birmingham LGBT school row: MPs to debate parents' rights

Roger Godsiff, MP for Hall Green. Image copyright UK Parliament
Image caption Roger Godsiff called for the debate despite previously being warned about his support for protesters

MPs will debate parental involvement in teaching after a row over whether children should learn about LGBT relationships.

The row, sparked by storybooks featuring different families, has caused protests outside schools in Birmingham since January.

The adjournment debate was put forward by Roger Godsiff whose constituency covers one of the schools involved.

He has previously supported protesters outside the school gates.

The Labour MP for Hall Green was given a warning by Labour's chief whip, Nick Brown, on 14 June not to repeat his support for the protestors outside Anderton Park Primary School who argue pupils are "too young" to learn about LGBT relationships, which they also say contradict Islam.

Image caption Protests have taken place at Anderton Park Primary School in Birmingham for months

Mr Godsiff was filmed earlier this month telling lead organiser Shakeel Afsar the protesters had a "just cause" and were "right".

Before that, he told the Victoria Derbyshire programme he did not believe the books were "age appropriate", but also admitted that he had not read them.

The BBC has approached the Labour Party for a comment about Tuesday's debate, scheduled for 19:00 BST.

The Party previously said Mr Godsiff's comments "do not reflect the Labour Party's position in any way and his behaviour falls below the standards expected of a Labour MP".

An injunction has been put in place around the school to keep protesters from gathering at the gates.

Birmingham City Council sought the injunction after it said the risk to teachers and pupils was "too serious to tolerate", branding the behaviour of protesters "increasingly unacceptable".

A trial at the end of July will decide whether protests can continue.

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