AGRESPECT, the LGBTQ+ farming organisation, has been given formal backing by the National Farmers Union Scotland.

The union joins many other agricultural and business organisations as partners in the organisation, which aims to encourage and promote inclusiveness for LGBTQ+ people living in rural communities.

NFUS has signed the Agrespect pledge which reads: "We stand against prejudice and support rural LGBTQ+ diversity, inclusion and enablement".

By signing up, the union is continuing the work it has already been doing to promote and support diversity in its membership and in the wider Scottish countryside, includes attending local Pride events over the last two years.

President Andrew McCornick said: “Many LGBTQ+ people in the farming and crofting community still choose not to disclose their sexuality because of discrimination and bias. We all have a moral responsibility to advocate and support our friends and colleagues regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.

“I want NFUS to be a welcoming, tolerant and vibrant place for all members, staff and affiliates and for this reason NFUS will not accept discrimination of any kind. Being open about your sexuality shouldn’t be a barrier to leading a happy life and a fulfilling career in the countryside and land-based industries.”

NFUS stressed that its membership was made up of a diverse range of people with different backgrounds, genders, religions and sexual preferences, and that this diversity only made the it stronger, and should be celebrated.