On 4 July 2013 Mr Speaker delivered a lecture entitled ‘Human Rights and Human Wrongs’ as part of Amnesty International’s programme for the Belfast Pride Festival.
Mr Speaker outlined the important role that Parliament, and in particular the Joint Committee on Human Rights, plays in scrutinising how legislation impacts the rights of individuals, and he lauded the progress Northern Ireland has made on the journey towards equality.
Mr Speaker said:
"I am very pleased to be coming to Belfast at the invitation of Amnesty International and to offer my support to the Belfast Pride Festival.
“Such festivals are especially important to allow us to stand in solidarity with those who are denied such basic freedoms. It is important to remember that discrimination, abuse, threats, incarceration, violence, torture and death are still very much part of the daily diet that is meted out to many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people in countries across the world.”
Read the speech in full: