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Anti-gay London bus advertising campaign pulled by TfL

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Anti-gay advertisement

© Core Issues Trust

Boris Johnson and Transport for London have halted an anti-gay advertising campaign.

The advert from religious groups Core Issues Trust and Anglican Mainstream states: "Not gay! Ex-gay, post-gay and proud. Get over it!"

The message is styled in the recognisable format of previous campaigns run by Stonewall, the LGBT charity who launched the "Some people are gay. Get over it!" slogan in 2007.

Writing on Twitter, TfL stated that the ads will no longer run as intended, adding: "We don't believe these ads reflect TfL's commitment to a tolerant and inclusive London."

Terms such as 'ex-gay' and 'post-gay' are used by some Christians, psychotherapists and psychiatrists to refer to homosexual patients who have undergone therapy and, according to Anglican Mainstream, "left a homosexual lifestyle" as a result.

Boris Johnson at the Westfield Stratford City opening
Mayor of London Johnson is quoted by The Guardian as saying: "London is one of the most tolerant cities in the world and intolerant of intolerance.

"It is clearly offensive to suggest that being gay is an illness that someone recovers from and I am not prepared to have that suggestion driven around London on our buses."

Ben Summerskill, chief executive of Stonewall, believes the adverts were clearly homophobic: "The only reason some gay people might want to stop being gay is because of the prejudice of the people who are publishing the ad."

The Advertising Standards Authority previously tweeted a message of reassurance following the news, stating that it was aware of the campaign and - while the organisation does not pre-vet adverts - it would monitor for complaints on Monday, when the campaign was originally set to launch.

Were the campaign to run, the adverts would have been seen on five different London bus routes, with vehicles passing areas including Oxford Street, Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus.

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