The MP offered her support just 24 hours before the event is
scheduled to begin in London.
"I am delighted to be supporting UK Black Pride 2011," she said.
"Equality sits firmly at the heart of this Government. While we
celebrate the real progress has been made towards equality in
recent years, we must not be complacent and we are working hard to
achieve more. We must celebrate the diverse nature of Britain - our
race, our sexual orientation, our gender and we must celebrate that
we are all these things and many more.
"I'm sorry I can't be with you, but I hope that everyone has a
great day of celebration at UK Black Pride 2011."
She used the opportunity to push the coalition government's work
around queer issues, making particular reference to a government
outline published in March - entitled Working for Lesbian, Gay,
Bisexual and Transgender Equality: Moving Forward - which
looks at ways to tackle homophobic bullying, increase hate crimes
reports and develop legislation on equal civil marriage and
"We cannot do this alone," she said. "It is only through people
like you that real change can happen. So I encourage everyone to
"This could be as simple as signing up to our Charter against
homophobia and transphobia in sport on facebook, (www.facebook.com/lgbtsportcharter
).We have seen real progress over the last 20 years when it comes
to tackling racism in sport and I firmly believe we should work to
remove all forms of discrimination from all sport, including
homophobia and transphobia."