Last night, Royal Holloway Students’ Union (SURHUL) passed a motion calling for Philip Hammond to resign from his posts as both defence secretary and MP for Runnymede and Weybridge.
The proposers were NCAFC LGBTQ rep Jack Saffery-Rowe and Joe Rayment, who were both present in the meeting in which, among other comments, Mr Hammond said, when asked why two people who love each other shouldn’t get married, replied “Well, we don’t let siblings get married either”.
The motion overwhelmingly passed after half an hour of heated discussion.
Part of the motion called for the motion itself to be proliferated through student and liberation networks. And so, we hereby publish the motion and hope that those who agree with it propose it at their unions. Only through collective action on this can we call Mr Hammond to account on his blatantly homophobic comments made on the 25th January.
Motion to call for the resignation of Philip Hammond MP
This Union notes
- that Philip Hammond, MP for Runnymede and Weybridge, met with two members of this Union on Friday 25th January ahead of a talk he gave at the university on defence for the Politics and International Relations Society.
- that at that meeting he made numerous homophobic arguments against the forthcoming same-sex marriage bill, which will be put before Parliament this month, including comparing the relationship for a same-sex couple with that of two siblings.
- that when later questioned on whether he said this, he has admitted to doing so.
This Union believes
- that any two people who love each other and are committed to each other should be allowed to marry.
- that marriage is a right, not a privilege, regardless of sex, race, gender or ability.
- that homophobia is never excusable.
- that elected officials are in the public eye and so comments like the ones Philip Hammond made are not only appalling in themselves, but moreover promote homophobia in all its forms.
This Union mandates
- the President and Vice-President (Communications and Campaigns) to publicly call for the resignation of Philip Hammond. This should be done by:
- writing a blog post to be publicized on the website.
- publishing this blog in the Union’s media outlets.
- to write a letter on this issue to the Prime Minister.
- to adapt this motion as a model motion to be sent to other Students’ Unions around the country, using the NUS Jisc email, the NUS Zone and Liberation email lists, the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts, the London Liberation Network, ULU and other student networks.
- the Vice-President (Communications and Campaigns) to write to NUS and request that they publish this model motion and an explanation on their website.
Proposed: Jack Saffery-Rowe (Campaigns sub-committee)
Seconded: Joe Rayment (Union Chair), Jamie Green (VPComCam), Oli Rushby (Student Trustee), Tom Harris (Academic Affairs Officer), Rose Walker (Campaigns sub-committee)
 On Radio 5Live’s Breakfast show on 31st January http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01q98mj/5_live_Breakfast_31_01_2013/