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MPs to debate making online homophobia a specific criminal offence

A petition was launched by TV personality Bobby Norris and received more than 152,000 signatures

By Steve Brown

Words: Steve Brown

MPs are set to debate making online homophobia a specific criminal offence.

A petition – which was started by TOWIE member Bobby Norris – was launched urging the UK Government to make online homophobic comments a criminal offence and has received more than 152,000 signatures.

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Neon is the new black.. 😝

A post shared by Bobby Norris (@bobbycnorris) on

Now, on July 1, Daniel Zeichner MP will open the debate.

Bobby said: “As a gay man I find it devastating how members of the LGBTQ community are still subjected to homophobic abuse online.

“Just because I am on TV, I don’t think that makes it acceptable to be sent homophobic messages and comments on social media platforms.

“Nobody should have to receive these comments. I won’t go into detail as to the various names I have been called, but this should not be acceptable and can have an impact on people’s mental health and has certainly helped in making my anxiety and low self-esteem worse by receiving them.”

In response to the petition, the Government said: “The Government recognises the harm that homophobic online messages can cause.

“We are working cross-Government to challenge inequality and make the UK’s online environment a safer place for everyone.”