James Windsor, Prince Edward’s first son, overtaking of his sister, Lady Louise, as eighth in line to the throne has today been referred to the Equality and Human Rights Commission by newly appointed Lib Dem Youth & Equalities Spokesperson Lynne Featherstone MP.
Following the common law practice of male-preference primogeniture that sees male heirs take preference over their female siblings in the line of succession, James Windsor (Viscount Severn) who was born in December now comes before his 4 year old sister in succession to the throne.
Ms. Featherstone has written to the chair of the Commission requesting an urgent investigation into the legality of displacement in the light of recent equality legislation.
Lady Louise’s displacement in favour of a male is the first amongst Queen Elizabeth II’s direct successors since the advent of laws on sexual discrimination.
Commenting, Lynne Featherstone MP:
“This is an arcane practice that might have suited the grey bearded king makers of old, but it is completely at odds with how a head of state should be selected in modern Britain.
“Of course who is eighth in line to the throne is slightly academic, but there is a 50/50 chance Prince William’s heir will be a woman and what then?
“More importantly, there is little hope of bringing full equality to the workplace if we can’t bring equality to the highest office in the land. Any practice that is based on the idea of making do with a woman until a man comes along must be consigned to the history books.”