‘Woke’ speakers banned from addressing events in Whitehall
An “official-sensitive” leaked memo has revealed that civil servants have been banned from inviting “woke” speakers who are critical of PM Boris Johnson’s policies.
Whitehall staffers have been warned not to extend invitations to individuals who have “spoken against key government policies”. This would involve carrying out “due diligence” checks on potential speakers, inducing examining old social media posts.
These moves follow several controversies over speakers critical of the government being invited to Whitehall social or networking events. Last month, senior Conservatives reacted angrily when it emerged that Professor Priyamvada Gopal, a Left-wing Cambridge academic who had made offensive remarks about Home Secretary Priti Patel, had been invited to deliver a lecture at the Home Office last month.
Ironically, the leaked memo warns that “the relationship between civil servants, ministers and the public” was at risk of being “adversely affected” the failure to “retain impartiality” in such instances.
In response to a report by The Telegraph, a Cabinet Office spokesman said: “Employees are encouraged to engage and discuss a range of different topics and perspectives, and all events must be consistent with the civil service code of conduct”.