Lloyd Russell-Moyle has hit back at suggestions that the city’s Pride celebrations should be brought to an end.

The Labour MP for Brighton Kemptown said that Brighton Pride is more important than ever as the LGBTQ+ community, in particular trans and non-binary people, face attacks.

A column written by Andy Winter, which appeared in The Argus in print and online, suggests that Pride has "become toxic" and that it's time to end the big annual event due to drugs and anti-social behaviour issues, as well as "corporate posturing and political expediency".

You can read the full column here.

Reacting to the column, Mr Russell-Moyle said "We cannot go backwards".

He said: “The attempt to ban teachers from supporting children and requiring them to report children who are not conforming to gender stereotypes is chilling for the whole community.

“The attempts to ban trans people from using particular restrooms or even the court case trying to prevent our own Survivors Network from offering inclusive services to trans women are wider attempts to make our city a hostile environment for LGBTQ+ people.

“This has also led to a rise in violent hate, which has increased everywhere and, in the worst example, has resulted in the murder of a young trans woman.

“It’s important to stand up and say that we cannot go backwards.”

Mr Russell-Moyle, who took part in this year’s Pride parade, added: “The ability of LGBTQ+ people and allies from a broad range of NGOs, unions, businesses and emergency services that can freely march and party at Pride does not diminish the event’s political essence - it’s a testament to the event’s success.”

The Argus: Lloyd Russell-Moyle, MP for Brighton PavilionLloyd Russell-Moyle, MP for Brighton Pavilion

Mr Russell-Moyle said that suggestions that the annual festivities had become “toxic” were an attempt to “turn Pride into a culture war football, when in fact it is a festival of love and tolerance”.

He also criticised attacks on trans and non-binary people, who were among the groups to march in Pride’s first march 50 years ago.

“They claim that Pride wants to abolish 'sex-based rights' without offering any concrete examples to support their claims," he said.

“When that fails, they fall back on divide and rule, pretending that there are good LGB people and dangerous trans and queers whose presence in Pride means “same-sex relationships are under attack”.

“These strawman arguments were used in the past as well. People opposed same-sex marriage saying it would undermine the sanctity of marriage or supported Section 28, claiming it was to protect children.

“These tactics extend to using fringe examples to misrepresent the entire community’s beliefs.

“The people of Brighton will see through this, and Brighton Pride has rightfully stood in solidarity with the trans community.”

You can read Mr Russell-Moyle's full response here.

The Pride parade, viewed by thousands of people across the city last weekend, saw groups from across the LGBTQ+ community come together to celebrate diversity and call for equal rights worldwide.