Content Warning: Contains descriptions of Transphobia
Labour MP Rosie Duffield has called for clarity on the party’s stance with regards to The Equality Act from leader Sir Keir Starmer, who confirms that there is “no reason to expect it is going to change”.
Canterbury MP Duffield has requested meetings with Sir Keir to discuss the party’s policy on the Equality Act which, according to Duffield, is unspecific about “women-only” spaces which she believes should exist “where it is deemed necessary”.
“Of course, that’s open to interpretation,” the Labour MP said on BBC Radio 4, “but I would have thought – at the very least – that implies domestic violence settings. Everyone has the right to be protected, and if biological females need more spaces that are just for them … we have the 2010 Equality Act and we have pledged as a party to uphold that.”
In response to the calls for discussion on the party’s stance on trans rights, a spokesman for Sir Keir said that he was still wedded to the policy which would prohibit trans women from certain spaces such as “women-only” prisons and refuges.
“Our position on this has not changed [from the 2019 manifesto]. What we have said is that Labour would work to update the Gender Recognition Act to enable a process for gender identification. And we also continue to support the implementation of the Equality Act, including the single-sex exemption which allows the provision of women-only spaces.”
The spokesman added, “This law rightly assumes the inclusion of trans women, except in specific circumstances.”
I also have feminist and gender critical beliefs which mean that whilst I've always fully supported the rights of all trans people to live freely as they choose, I do not accept self-ID as a passport for male-bodied biological men to enter protected spaces for biological women..
— Rosie Duffield MP 💙 (@RosieDuffield1) September 10, 2021
Broadcasting her anti-trans views on banning trans women from “DV refuges, women’s prisons, single-sex wards and school toilets,” Duffield took to Twitter and wrote a tread of ten Tweets on the subject.
“I also have feminist and gender-critical beliefs which mean that whilst I’ve always fully supported the rights of all trans people to live freely as they choose, I do not accept self-ID as a passport for male-bodied biological men to enter protected spaces for biological women.”
Duffield has faced extensive criticism for her anti-trans views both politically and online. It is reported that she is currently under investigation by the Labour party for liking a Tweet by a gay US rapper that said most transgender people are “heterosexuals cosplaying as the opposite sex”.
Furthermore, Duffield will not be attending the Labour party’s annual conference which will run from September 25-29, she claims, because of online threats and abuse in response to her anti-trans statements.
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Dublin Rape Crisis Centre
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