A charity that bank rolled a conference advocating ‘gay cure’ therapy is attempting to place supporters in MPs offices.
The Christian Action, Research and Education (CARE) charity is encouraging Members of Parliament to accept its supporters as free interns.
CARE previously admitted funding a conference which included talks on “mentoring the sexually broken” and campaigned strongly against marriage equality.
The revelation comes as Prime Minister Theresa May finalises a deal with the anti-LGBT DUP in order to form a new government.
The charity has been left struggling for allies after the majority of its supportive MPs were either voted out or resigned at the June 8 election.
Four MPs accepted interns from CARE, according to the final Register of Members’ Interests for the last parliament.
Two of those MPs – Conservatives David Burrowes (Enfield Southgate) and Caroline Ansell (Eastbourne) – lost their seats.
A third MP who worked with the charity, Labour’s Fiona MacTaggart, did not re-stand at the election.
Now the charity, which continues to campaign against same-sex marriage, is attempting to sign-up new politicians to their scheme.
In emails to MPs, seen by PinkNews, CARE calls for “capable Christian graduates” to be placed in MPs offices for 10 month stints.
They also offer to cover the costs of their supporters while they work the corridors of power – providing CARE interns with bursaries of £770 per month so they are free of cost to politicians.
CARE told MPs: “The Leadership Programme is an educational graduate scheme helping capable Christian graduates explore a career in politics and deepen their understanding of the relationship between Christian faith and public life.
“A key part of the Programme involves 10 months working in the office of a MP for four days a week.”
In 2009 CARE backed a London conference which discussed “therapeutic approaches to and understandings of same-sex attraction” and “mentoring the sexually broken”.
It also emerged the Chief Executive of CARE was director of the limited company behind anti-equality group Coalition for Marriage in 2012.
Stephen Doughty, Labour MP for Cardiff South and Penarth, told PinkNews: “I am surprised and dismayed to have been approached by CARE to host one of their interns – not least whilst they continue to oppose the right of me and other LGBT citizens to marry the person we want to, and of effectively implying that you can’t be a true Christian and gay.
“Their record and views on a whole series of issues is deeply concerning – and I hope that MPs will think very seriously and research their views and record before contemplating associating with them.”
He added: “Coming off the back of Tim Farron’s deeply disappointing remarks – I believe firmly you can be a faithful Christian and LGBT.
“Those who purport like CARE to represent the ‘Christian community’ simply don’t represent me or many other Christians.
“The good news Jesus brought us was of God’s love and care for all – not a select few.”
Contacted by PinkNews, CARE declined to explain their views on homosexuality and LGBT rights.
CARE did not answer when asked if they believe homosexuality is a sin.
CARE told PinkNews: “CARE is not anti-gay – love is central to Jesus’ message and he taught us to love one another as he loved us.
“We recognise that there are many different forms of family, and we respect these, especially where they provide stable environments for bringing up children.
“We salute the invaluable, loving families established by single parents and same-sex couples.
“And we recognise that civil partnerships and same-sex marriage are now legal in England, Scotland and Wales.”