Those with even a passing acquaintance of Tower Hamlets politics will know that myself and Cllr Golds, the leader of the Conservative group, are regularly at loggerheads with each other.
I don’t agree with much of Cllr Golds’ politics, but I do respect the tenacity and conviction with which he pursues them.
I was alarmed therefore to read in the Evening Standard that Cllr Golds had been subject to regular homophobic abuse at Tower Hamlets council events.
I had been aware of alleged comments from a member of the public on the night of the February council meeting last year. But I was unaware that the problem of homophobia at council meetings was as serious as Cllr Golds intimated to the Evening Standard journalist.
Tower Hamlets Council is determined to stamp down hard on homophobia, and any incidents of hate crime. That’s why I have decided to contact the borough commander to request that the police conduct an investigation into the allegations of homophobia at council meetings, or related events.
I am proud that Tower Hamlets Council came sixteenth – as well as being the best London borough and the second best local authority in the UK – in the Stonewall Top 100 Employers 2012, published last week which showcases Britain’s best employers for lesbian, gay and bisexual staff. However, there is still much work to be done in overcoming homophobia.
I look forward to the police response. I will be encouraging the fullest cooperation with their investigation when it commences.