Paedophile link alarms winners of gay rights awards

Share this article

GAY rights campaigners are to rename a prestigious award following allegations that it honoured a man who fought to legalise paedophilia.

The Ian Dunn Award was given to Patrick Harvie, the Green MSP, and Margaret Smith, the Liberal Democrat, for their work as activists for gay rights.

However, it has been alleged that Mr Dunn, a prominent gay activist who died in 1998, was also co-founder of the Paedophile Information Exchange, set up to promote the acceptance and understanding of adults who want to have sex with children.

Ms Smith has demanded that the award be given another name within the week or she will give it back.

She said: "I was totally and utterly unaware of the allegations when I accepted the award and I am very upset. Obviously I absolutely condemn paedophilia and anyone who is apologist for it."

Mr Harvie also called for the award to be renamed.

"It is deeply troubling that anybody might be seen to be excusing or condoning acts of child abuse which are abhorrent ... and I think the right thing to do is change the name of the award," Ms Smith said.

Susan Macdonald, the national director of the Terrence Higgins Trust Scotland - the organisation currently in charge of the award - said it was likely to be renamed.