NHS splurged thousands on LGBT rainbow crossings during height of Covid pandemic
MPs accused NHS leaders of 'pandering to woke nonsense'
NHS hospitals have splurged tens of thousands of pounds worth of funding on LGBT+ rainbow crossings during the Covid-19 pandemic.
MPs attacked NHS leaders last night, accusing them of "pandering to woke nonsense". They said the money should have gone on patient care instead.
A Nottinghamshire NHS Trust - Sherwood Forest Hospitals - justified spending £2,780 on a crossing in 2021 as the "latest addition to the trust’s equality, diversity and inclusivity agenda" and as a "symbol of the difficult 15 months we’ve all had in the NHS".
Sherwood Forest drew on a Stonewall report which said one in seven LGBT+ people do not seek out the healthcare they need out of fear they'll be discriminated again.
South West Yorkshire NHS Trust spent £5,000 on nine crossings, whereas Salisbury NHS Trust spent £11,000 on four crossings from 2020-2021 - as revealed in the Mail On Sunday.
"This is another example of a public sector organisation pandering to woke nonsense", Sir John Hayes, chairman of the Common Sense Group of Conservative MPs said.
"Crossing the road is not about your sexual orientation.
"It is about being safe. The fact some clown in the NHS has chosen to spend money that could have been spent on patients on this kind of stuff is disgraceful.
"The idea a gay person would be more likely to go to hospital if they were in need of care because of the colour of a crossing – if it wasn’t so disturbing, it would be the stuff of a Monty Python sketch."
As reported by the MailOnline, some hospitals have already gone back on their decision to introduce rainbow crossings.
Belfast Health and Social Care Trust spent almost £3000 on two rainbow crossings, both of which have now been removed.
Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, which has two crossings, both painted in August 2020, doubled-down and said they intended to "send a positive message" to LGBT+ patients.
North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust decided not to paint any rainbow crossings because they thought they were "not deemed value for money."
An NHS England spokesman said: "While it is for individual trusts to decide how they allocate funding, the NHS is one of the most efficient health services in the world."