General Medical Council: Internal Guidance Debate

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Department: Department of Health and Social Care

General Medical Council: Internal Guidance

Lord Cormack Excerpts
Tuesday 17th October 2023

(9 months, 1 week ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Markham Portrait Lord Markham (Con)
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I absolutely agree. That is why, as I say, we could not be firmer in saying we want to make sure it is very clear in the NHS Constitution that we are referring to women as women—that has to be the absolute primary descriptor—and men as men. We could not be clearer on that, and I am very happy to take that up across government as well.

Baroness Williams of Trafford Portrait Baroness Williams of Trafford (Con)
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My Lords, my noble friends should come to a gentlemen’s agreement on who is going first.

Lord Cormack Portrait Lord Cormack (Con)
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My Lords—

None Portrait Noble Lords
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Oh!

Lord Cormack Portrait Lord Cormack (Con)
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I am most grateful. Would my noble friend on the Front Bench take the opportunity to pay tribute to the heroism—I use the word deliberately —of JK Rowling and those like her who have spoken out so passionately and so often? What the noble Baroness, Lady Hayter, said, we should all echo to the rafters.

Lord Markham Portrait Lord Markham (Con)
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I completely agree. I believe that, more than anything in society, we have to be tolerant of people and their ability to have free speech and express their views freely. I think we have all seen circumstances where people feel intimidated in expressing what they feel is right, particularly in this circumstance of stating clearly when a woman is a woman and when a man is a man.