ProtestagainstDUPOn Saturday 24 June and 1 July, thousands of people will take to the streets of London and Belfast to protest the deal between the Conservative party and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

After Theresa May’s party lost their majority in the snap general election last week, the Tories are now in talks with Northern Ireland’s DUP to form a government with their support. Many people are concerned about this political alliance, given that the DUP are against LGBT rights and anti-abortion.

The DUP has blocked the legalisation of equal marriage in Northern Ireland a total of five times, despite the majority of the population is in favour of it. Some of the party’s MPs have been openly homophobic and the DUP supports a law that would allow people and businesses to discriminate against others based on their religious beliefs.

Over 2000 people have already signed up to attend the two marches – the Women’s March On Downing Street Against The DUP in London on 24 June and the Love Equality NI’s March for Civil Marriage Equality in Belfast on 1 July.

On the London march’s Facebook Event page, the organisers explain the reasons for this march in more detail:

“We are marching in support of the right to access abortion in NI and against a Tory working agreement with no democratic mandate with a political group known to promote policy which restricts the rights of women and LGBT people and is known for links to far right politics.”

As reported in PinkNews, the president of the National Union of Students’ Irish branch, Fergal McFerran, spoke about the Belfast protest:

“After the general election, there’s been more attention given to equal rights here in Northern Ireland, mainly because of the record that the Northern Ireland Assembly has in terms of a lack of delivery.”

He added that he wanted to “ensure that a spotlight is shone on [the DUP’s] LGBT rights record here.”