NUS Women’s Campaign condemns transphobia in the Equality Act

Student representatives at the annual NUS Women’s Campaign Conference voted overwhelmingly in favour of a motion that condemns transphobia in the Equality Act and within the women’s movement yesterday.

The motion in question – entitled “Transmisogyny in the Equality Act” – addressed the horrific exemption which ensures that:

“A counsellor working with victims of rape might have to be a woman and not a transsexual person, even if she has a gender recognition certificate, in order to avoid causing them further distress.”

The trans community has blogged about this exemption at length, exploring how it could result in trans people being denied access to numerous public services, and how it massively undermines the Gender Recognition Act. We’ve also discovered that the clause in question was pushed by certain individuals representing Rape Crisis Centres.

It’s really positive that a feminist organisation is keen to unite behind trans rights. It should, of course, be a given that this is the case since we fight the same fight against patriarchy and gender essentialism, but the attitude of those women’s groups who pushed the offensive clause in the Equality Act shows that we cannot take trans-positive feminism for granted. I was therefore really pleased that NUS Women’s Campaign policy now includes a commitment to lobby the government on changing this unfair law alongside the aforementioned condemnation.

For those who might be interested, the new policy is as follows:

1. To condemn the offensive clause within the Equality Act 2010 in the strongest possible terms.
2. To lobby the government for an amendment to the Equality Act 2010 that ensures that trans women have fair and equal access to women’s shelters and rape crisis centres.
3. To support campaigns which seek to persuade transphobic women’s shelters and rape crisis centres to revise their approach.
4. To oppose any campaigns that seek to shut down transphobic shelters and rape crisis centres.

Full details of the motion can be found here.

I take this commitment entirely seriously because the NUS Women’s Campaign has demonstrated many times that it is fully behind trans rights during the last two or three years. This is a feminist campaign that refuses to share a platform with Julie Bindel (and was prepared to face legal action from her after doing so), supported a trans block at Reclaim The Night London, and ensured that trans individuals were included in groundbreaking research on women students’ experiences of harassment and violence. It’s a women’s organisation that broadly “gets” non-binary gender identities, and has a permanent trans representative on its elected committee (two people are holding this position as a jobshare this year).

I also noticed at this year’s conference that a number of cis women were keen to mention trans issues in relevant speeches. Meanwhile, prominent trans activist Roz Kaveney was invited to participate in a panel on intersectionality.

This post has turned into a bit of a positive gush but I honestly only have good things to say about how this liberation campaign has dealt with trans issues, and that’s a rarity that deserves celebration. I can only hope that the campaign sustains this momentum in future years, and wish its members the absolute best for this future.

The Lib Dems: A Cautionary Tale

“This is supposed to be the discrimination bill to end all discrimination bills, and yet it will contain quite blatant prejudice. Only protecting people who are considering or have undergone gender reassignment surgery will leave huge swathes of the transgender population vulnerable to what, in effect, will be legalised discrimination. I will do my best to make sure the final legislation offers real protection for people who define their gender differently.”

– Lynne Featherstone (Lib Dem) criticises the Equality Bill in 2008

I feel that I’ve learned a lot from the Liberal Democrats.

In many ways, I’ve always been a natural Liberal Democrat voter. Labour were running the country during my teenage years, and I grew increasingly disgusted with them during their time in power. The UK became increasingly authoritarian as the government made clear that civil rights were not a priority. We became involved in a number of utterly pointless, wasteful wars. Granted, the situation for LGBT people improved immeasurably, but this was down more to shifting social attitudes and a number of important victories in the European courts than anything else.

I understood the way that Labour regarded people like me. I was a socialist but accepted social democracy as a necessary reality, I was a trans person with an increasing number of equal rights. I imagine that, to them, I was a natural Labour voter. I wasn’t, and I’m still not. I won’t forget the ID card proposals, the introduction of tuition fees,  the wars and the arrogance. I won’t forget the way in which Labour representatives claimed time and time again that they’d done all these things for trans rights when pretty much every piece of trans-positive legislation they passed happened because the European courts told them to do it.

In opposition, we had the Conservative party (booo! hiss, etc.) and the Liberal Democrats. Oh, and the Greens, but they never stood the chance of getting anywhere, and I certainly wasn’t interested in the far-fight fringe parties.

The Liberal Democrats appealed to me. I lived in a constituency with a Lib Dem MP who’d done a lot of good, hard work for the area. The Liberal Democrats believed in greater social freedoms and less legal restrictions. The Liberal Democrats opposed war, and spending on weapons. The Liberal Democrats (supposedly) believed in social justice, and stood up for the poor. On that front they were a little too…y’know, liberal, but they seemed to have their hearts in the right place, and it had to be better than the situation under the hypocritical Labour party, right?

The Liberal Democrats not only spoke about LGBT rights, but seemed to know what they were talking about. Labour talked about civil partnership, and the Lib Dems talked about equal marriage. They actually got the issues, and they understood that bi people exist, and they understood that trans people exist, and – shockingly – they even understood that the trans spectrum encompasses more than just recreational cross-dressers and “primary” transsexuals.

I was a natural Liberal Democrat voter. I voted for them in two general elections and one local election. I voted Green once in a European election, but I was feeling terribly radical that day.

I now, of course, realise that my trust was utterly misplaced. The Lib Dem betrayal has been almost absolute.

I mean, they – like Labour before them – are still talking the talk. The Government Equality Office is pushing some kind of trans action plan that probably will actually make a difference in some areas, and hence genuinely help people (you can contribute to it here, if you manage to get your head around the bizarre contribution process). But, on the whole, the Lib Dems are obeying their senior coalition partners in a way that’s going to cause a lot of people a whole lot of harm.

The tuition fees sell-out was arguably the most high-profile instance of Lib Dem duplicity, but you just need to look at, well, everything that’s wrong with the current government attitude to see where the party is letting down the minority groups that they claim to speak for.

The cuts are hitting the poor, the young, the elderly and the disabled hardest. A disproportionate amount of trans people tend to be poor and disabled (funny how massive amounts of discrimination can do that, huh?)  Support services are failing left, right and centre as funding dries up. Trans charities such as Gender Matters, which struggled to find funding at the best of times, are going under. The restructuring of the NHS is already hurting trans people in areas that are withdrawing funding for treatment: I suspect this will only get worse if the proposed new system is implemented.

There’s no point in having all these wonderful new proposed laws in place to help trans people if there are no real support structures in place any more because the government has destroyed them all. The Liberal Democrats are totally complicit in this disaster, and it’s only going to get worse.

This is why I have absolutely no sympathy for the Lib Dems’ plight in the wake of yesterday’s dramatic Barnsley by-election result. The party’s candidate came sixth in the polls, behind UKIP, the BNP and an independent as well as the Labour and Conservative candidates. Quite frankly, it serves them right. I genuinely hope that this the beginning of a process in which the party will destroy itself, or at least totally undergo a thorough re-invention process. I’m not sure what will have to happen before I can trust them again though.

I used to think that the old adage, “never trust a politician”, was an unhelpful cliché. I now feel that to make any kind of meaningful change, we need to take power into our own hands. We can’t rely on some well-spoken, well-meaning, well-groomed young thing with a brightly coloured rosette to do the work for us.

There is never enough research

This morning I’ve found myself reading a new Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) research review about “identity-based” bullying in schools (as you do!) The report summarises statistics and qualitative data from research into racist, sexist, disabilist, homophobic and transphobic bullying in British schools. Yep, you read that right: the “T” word is very much in there. I suppose all that hot air from government departments and quangos about “equality strands” has to be good for something.

To my dismay, the section on transphobic bullying was tiny. Not because the EHRC didn’t put any effort into it – I’m pretty certain they were giving it their best shot – but because there was so little for them to write about. My heart sank when I came across that that classic phrase…

“there is little existing literature”

As in:

“Transphobia is an understudied area and there are very few UK-based studies which have explored this, especially in relation to transgender young people”

…and:

“In terms of preventing and responding to transphobic bullying, there is little existing literature highlighting particular issues for transphobic individuals”

…meaning that:

further research is needed to help identify young people who may be most at risk of experiencing transphobic bullying and the specific support needs they may have.

This is how it always goes. It doesn’t matter if the research is about bullying in school, access to health care, access to employment and/or benefits, experiences in the street or in the home: it almost always boils down to “further research is needed”. This is the case in pretty much any field (how else would academics gain gainful employment, after all?) but so much more the case with particularly marginalised groups, including travellers and asylum seekers as well as trans people.

There are a few utterly fantastic pieces of research out there dealing with trans experiences of discrimination and harassment, but in the broad scheme of things there’s very little for activists and public sector bodies to draw upon when trying to get a realist picture of what’s going on.

The thing is, there’s very few people doing trans research, and even less people prepared to fund it. With government-backed research councils being massively scaled down because of the cuts, this is only going to get worse. This is pretty disastrous if you’re trying to get public bodies to tackle transphobia, and even more disastrous if you’re trying to get the government to pass trans-friendly legislation. For instance, the Labour government refused to budge on the exclusion of non-binary gender identities from the Equality Act because there was “no evidence” of such people even existing.

Research reviews are all very well and good, but we’re being told over and over again that there isn’t much to say about transphobia: not because it doesn’t happen, but because not enough people have looked at it. It’s time for organisations such as the EHRC and NHS to put their money where their mouth is and actually back some thoughtful, in-depth trans research projects.

Why I will be at Reclaim The Night in London this Saturday

London’s Reclaim The Night march has a complex relationship with the issue of trans inclusion in women’s spaces.  Detractors often accuse the event – organised by the London Feminist Network – of being open only to “women-born-women” (i.e. cis women, but not trans women).  The truth, however, is somewhat more complicated.

Leaflets for the event describe the march as “women-only”: a term which, on the face of it, has a quite straightforward meaning.  However, trans women have learned over the years that “women-only” all too often actually means “cis women only”: we are used to being regarded as “men” within feminist spaces in general, and radical feminist spaces in particular.  As such, we ask for clarity from groups that support trans inclusion.  This clarity doesn’t have to include a hefty statement, and can involve a simple phrase such as “including trans women”.  In a perfect world, this shouldn’t need doing, but unfortunately we don’t live in a perfect world.  Alternative solutions include the use of phrases such as “self-identified women” and “self-defined women” when describing who an event is for.  These are clumsy, awkward terms, but they do a job that needs doing.

Several organisations (such as the NUS Women’s Campaign) advertise Reclaim The Night as being open to “self-defining women”.  However, there is no such clarification on any of the official literature from London Feminist Network.  The group is prepared to informally respond to some inquiries about the issue, and confirm that trans women are, indeed, welcome on the march.  These informal assurances are never followed up with any official clarification.

The lack of an “official” or explicit position on this issue may seem like a minor problem, but several factors ensure that it is actually quite important.  The first of these is the aforementioned history of trans-exclusion within women’s groups and women’s spaces.  This is compounded by the transphobia present within London Feminist Network, where comments about trans women “really” being men and jokes about burly trans women “protecting” the march from cis men go unchallenged.  London Feminist Network have also previously invited transphobic journalist Julie Bindel to speak at a rally following Reclaim The Night in 2007, and have demonstrated in support of Bindel’s nomination for Stonewall “Journalist of the Year” award in 2008.  Moreover, anecdotal accounts within the trans community recount physical assaults upon trans people by cis feminists at past Reclaim The Night marches in Oxford and Birmingham.  This history has led to the accusation that London Feminist Network deliberately operate a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy regarding trans women at Reclaim The Night, and the belief that by not making their position clear on the issue they appease transphobic elements within the group.

It is no wonder then that a number of trans feminists have called for a boycott of this year’s Reclaim The Night march, a call echoed by cis allies.  I understand and respect the position of these women: after all, London Feminist Network still have not made it clear that trans women are welcome in a formal context.  However, I feel that this is not necessarily the best solution to the problem.

Critics of Reclaim The Night and the London Feminist Network compare the situation to that at events such as the infamous Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, where trans women are explicitly banned from attending.  However, the situation is not so clear-cut at Reclaim The Night.  The issue is not one of explicit exclusion: it is one of non-explicit inclusion.  Indeed, a number of trans women known to me regularly participate in the London march, and are open about being trans when doing so.

Moreover, Reclaim The Night is an important and worthy cause.  As London Feminist Network explain,

The Reclaim The Night march gives women a voice and a chance to reclaim the streets at night on a safe and empowering event. We aim to put the issue of our safety on the agenda for this night and every day.

Reclaim The Night protests gendered violence against women.  It protests the terrible rate of rape convictions and the fact that women are most likely to be attacked by men.  It raises awareness of the horrifying number of sexual assaults committed against women.

Critics often point to statistics that demonstrate men are more likely to be subject to assault on the streets.  I acknowledge that this is the case: however, why is it that women and girls are constantly told not to walk the streets at night, and why is it that so many of us are brought up with this fear of doing so?  Reclaim The Night is a powerful counter-demonstration against this idea, with thousands of women marching together down the streets of London.  It’s a powerful visual image, and gives participants a powerful feeling of unity and strength.

Trans activists and queer feminists are liable to question the protest by pointing to the instability of “woman”.  This critique has led to the establishment of “mixed” Reclaim The Night marches throughout the United Kingdom, and I believe that these are positive and important events.  However, there is still an ideological value in woman-only marches. Patriarchial institutions ensure that women may be afraid to speak out, or find it hard to make their point in male-dominated spaces.  “Woman” may be a socially constructed category, an artificial amalgamation of many very different individuals, but it also has a powerful social reality.  Individuals are discriminated against in the workplace, at home and in the streets for being women.  Misogyny does not take theories of social construction into account.

I feel this latter point has important consequences for what we mean when we talk about trans inclusion.  Thus far, I have referred to trans women within this post, because historically the debate about trans inclusion has been centred around this group.  However, there are many genderqueer and otherwise gender-variant individuals who effectively live as (and hence receive discrimination as) women, and there are many who define themselves as women in some sense even as they consider themselves to be trans/genderqueer/gender-variant.  Trans inclusion should therefore be about the participation of all women who are trans, and not just transsexed women.

I feel basing participation at women’s events upon “self-identity” is an imperfect solution to the issue of who should be included, but it’s the only fair way forward.  Ultimately, it has to be up to an individual whether or not they “self-identify” as a woman, and the category boundaries will remain fuzzy.  However, the experiences of those women’s groups and organisations that rely upon identity rather than gender policing indicate that cis men don’t tend to use this policy as an excuse to turn up at women-only events!

There are, therefore, a number of serious issues with how Reclaim The Night London is organised and promoted.  However, the event remains an important one, and there are powerful arguments for it remaining a women-only march (it is worth noting that there is also a demonstration that takes place for allies, and a mixed rally and after-party after both events).

This is why I believe that a visible trans presence at this year’s Reclaim The Night march is important.  I feel that the case for boycott is not clear-cut, and that the protest is an important one that deserves as many women attending as possible.  The call for explicit trans inclusion must remain loud and clear, but a visible trans presence at the march can be part of that message.  I strongly encourage all and any women who are trans to join the trans presence at the march.  This presence is intended to support the broad message of Reclaim The Night, protest the lack of clarity on trans inclusion and raise trans feminists concerns: for instance I personally intend to march under a placard denouncing the fact that it is now legal to eject trans women from women’s shelters and rape crisis centres.

Together we can build a united women’s movement.  I hope to see you there!

A Trans Presence at Reclaim The Night London

The annual Reclaim The Night march takes place in London this weekend, on Saturday 27 November.

A number of trans activists have launched a Facebook group to promote a trans presence at the march.  Since the group is currently private in order to avoid potentially outing anyone, I’ve offered to replicate the information from that group here for individuals who might not use Facebook or be able to access said group.

This group is for anyone who exists at the intersection of “TRANS” and “WOMAN” who wishes to participate in the national Reclaim The Night march in London this year. 

This group is also for ALLIES who wish to support us.

We are not always welcome at women’s events, and are often excluded from women’s spaces. Reclaim The Night is meant to be open to “ALL” women, but the official literature does not make it clear that women who happen to be trans, genderqueer or otherwise gender-variant are welcome.

Rather than boycott the event, we propose taking to the streets, and peacefully marching alongside our sisters at Reclaim The Night.

We march because violence against women is endemic in our society.

We march because rape conviction rates are shockingly low.

We march because the harassment of women in the street is an everyday occurrence.

We march because intersecting oppressions mean that some women are particularly at risk (let us not forget that the majority of known trans murder victims in the west are black trans women).

We march because cuts to everything from education to legal aid will disproportionately affect women: particularly those women who have been subject to violence.

We march to oppose the closing of shelters and rape crisis centres.

We march to oppose the fact that it is legal to discriminate against women who are trans and/or genderqueer in shelters and rape crisis centres.

We march because misogyny and patriarchal transphobia are our real enemies.

We march because we should never have to feel afraid on the streets at night.

We ask that the organisers of Reclaim The Night acknowledge the continuing transphobia within women’s movements.

We ask that, in the light of this, the literature advertising Reclaim The Night makes explicit that we are welcome.

We deeply respect the arguments of those trans women and cis allies who have called for a boycott of Reclaim The Night, but wish to take to the streets and march with our sisters.

We wish to note that many women’s groups who participate in Reclaim The Night (such as the NUS Women’s Campaign) are explicitly trans-inclusive.

We ultimately wish to move beyond the “trans wars” and participate in the women’s movement without our transness having to even be an issue.

We ask trans (and trans ally) participants to respect the aims and intentions of Reclaim The Night. There is a separate protest and a mixed rally and after-party at which all are welcome, but the march is for those who identify as women. The manner and nature of this identity is, of course, your personal decision and understanding.

Reclaim The Night London exists to protest against – and raise awareness of – violence against women. Organisers explain:

“In every sphere of life we negotiate the threat or reality of rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment. We cannot claim equal citizenship while this threat restricts our lives as it does. We demand the right to use public space without fear. We demand this right as a civil liberty, we demand this as a human right. The Reclaim The Night march gives women a voice and a chance to reclaim the streets at night on a safe and empowering event. We aim to put the issue of our safety on the agenda for this and every night and day.”

http://londonfeministnetwork.org.uk/events/reclaim-the-night/

Please share suggestions for banners and placards! Some ideas we are thinking about include:

“Women who are Trans – Marching with our Sisters”

“Women who are Trans and Genderqueer – We’re victims of the Patriarchy too”

“We Need Access To Shelters”

“We Need Access To Rape Crisis Centres”

Woman remanded in men’s prison

The key to this one is in the title of the post.  Of course, the woman in question happens to be trans, so the whole female/male prison division comes into play differently, because transphobia is endemic within our criminal justice system in the same way that it’s endemic in every other part of public life.

It’s quite normal for trans women to be sent to men’s prisons, despite the massive risks they face when this happens.  Within the UK, this goes to show how little the Gender Recognition Act and Equality Act count for under particular circumstances.  Nina Kanagasingham is being punished heavily before her trial even begins.  Once you also factor in the obscene attitude of the media towards Kanagasingham and her alleged victim it’s easy to see “the ease with which our lives and identities can be stripped from us and used as a public plaything“.

This particular case is complicated by the fact that Kanagasingham has been accessed of the murder of Sonia Burgess, a greatly respected lawyer and human rights activist who also happens to be trans.  I’ve already seen the inevitable nasty comments written by trans people who argue that Kanagasingham deserves every horrible thing that might happen to her because of her alleged deed.  However, there’s an important principle of justice at stake here.  It’s never suddenly become okay to be transphobic, and it’s never suddenly okay to strip someone of their identity and their gender.  It’s also particularly sick that an individual is effectively being punished by the criminal justice and the media before she’s convicted of anything.  She’s not being punished for murder: she’s being punished for being trans.

The human cost of wars within feminism

Australian blogger A. E. Brain has caused a stir by digging up a clause within the new UK Equality Act that effectively gives organisations which offer gendered services the opportunity to legally discriminate against trans people. The offending clause reads as follows:

Equality Act 2010 (c. 15)
Schedule 3 — Services and public functions: exceptions
Part 7 — Separate and single services

Gender reassignment
28
(1) A person does not contravene section 29, so far as relating to gender reassignment discrimination, only because of anything done in relation to a matter within sub-paragraph (2) if the conduct in question is a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim.

(2) The matters are—
(a) the provision of separate services for persons of each sex;
(b) the provision of separate services differently for persons of each sex;
(c) the provision of a service only to persons of one sex.

Equality Act 2010 (c. 15)
Schedule 9 — Work: exceptions
Part 1 — Occupational requirements
(3) The references in sub-paragraph (1) to a requirement to have a protected
characteristic are to be read—
(a) in the case of gender reassignment, as references to a requirement not to be a transsexual person (and section 7(3) is accordingly to be ignored);

A helpful example is given in in the Act’s notes:

Gender reassignment: paragraph 28

749. This paragraph replaces a similar provision in the Sex Discrimination Act 1975.
Example
A group counselling session is provided for female victims of sexual assault. The organisers do not allow transsexual people to attend as they judge that the clients who attend the group session are unlikely to do so if a male-to-female transsexual person was also there. This would be lawful.

Schedule 9: Work: exceptions
Part 1: Occupational requirements

A counsellor working with victims of rape might have to be a woman and not a transsexual person, even if she has a gender recognition certificate, in order to avoid causing them further distress.

I was aware some time ago that this clause might exist since I campaigned heavily on issues relating to the Equality Bill prior to it’s passage. Due to other demands on my time however I didn’t managed to keep track of this clause. I’m extremely disappointed but not surprised to see that its still present in the final text of the Act.

As the analysis from Questioning Transphobia makes clear, this is actually a backward step: it effectively overrides the Gender Recognition Act (GRA), which previously allowed trans people who had a Gender Recognition Certificate to “count” as appropriately female or male for all legal purposes. Now we have a situation whereby an organisation with the right excuses (e.g. a rape crisis centre) can potentially get away with keeping out trans people (and kicking out anyone they discover to be trans).

Without another change in the law through legislative means (and I don’t imagine this is going to happen any time soon), any trans person who wishes to challenge this situation legally will probably have to bring a challenge through the European courts, which will be incredibly messy. It’ll cost huge amounts of time and money (for the individual concerned, any organisations supporting them, and the rape crisis centre itself) and it’ll be politically disasterous for pretty much everyone. It’ll probably be an even more fucked-up re-run of what happened in Canada a few years back.

This is particularly sad because much of the Equality Bill represents a step forwards. For example, trans childen have gained extra protections to deal with discrimination in schools, many individuals with non-binary identities are now legally protected from discrimination in the workplace and the provision of goods and services if they can demonstrate that they’re living in a “new” gender role (with no medical intervention necessary, huzzah!) and there’s now a positive duty for various bodies to work towards trans inclusion. Why, then, is there this gigantic screw-up?

It’s not the fault of any of the trans rights organisations (e.g. Press For Change, GIRES) who were campaigning on the Equality Bill. They were furious at the time, and I figure they still are now. They, along with other groups and individuals campaigning on the Bill, lobbied the Government Equality Office (GEO) to no avail, and also lobbied the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to lobby the GEO, but the EHRC didn’t have a lot of luck either.

It’s not the fault of the NHS or private medical organisations, who might conceivably take advantage of this loophole to deny trans women access to particular “women’s” services. They didn’t push for this clause, and apparently no other groups did either…apart from a number of rape crisis centres.

This is the most sickening aspect of the whole affair: I’m aware from my involvement in the Equality Bill campaign that  rape crisis centres, which exist to help some of the most vulnerable and damaged individuals in society, pushed for the inclusion of this clause: a clause which doesn’t merely allow them to deny access to trans people, but also sets a disturbing legal precedent by rolling back the GRA and offers the opportunity for others to legally deny services to trans people.

Now it’s important that I clarify at this point that not all rape crisis centres are transphobic. I know that some in particular work extremely hard towards ensuring they offer a trans-friendly environment. I also honestly have no idea which centres in particular were pushing for this clause, and it would be dangerous (and hence deeply inappropriate) to guess. I cannot stress how incredibly important and vital the services offered by rape crisis centres are.

The argument offered by certain women’s rights activists will be that trans women may threaten or disturb some survivors because they look like men. This argument is a variation on the idea of universal womanhood, and as black feminists demonstrated long ago, it simply doesn’t hold up. There will be those black or asian survivors who feel threatened by white people because they have been victims of racist violence, and others who feel threatened by some other women because they were sexually assaulted or raped by another woman. As far as I’m aware, no woman is rejected from rape crisis centres in the UK because of her sexuality or the colour of her skin, and for good reason. Kicking out trans people is transphobic, plain and simple. This situation has come about because of the vile dogma of a certain brand of radical feminism, and quite frankly I’m horrified.

Because of the doctrine that trans women aren’t real women, that trans women don’t suffer sexual violence (in the face of huge amounts of evidence to the contrary), a certain school of feminism has been responsible for pushing back our rights. As a trans woman, I’m pretty upset. As a feminist, I’m furious.

The idealogical “trans wars” within feminism deal with real lives and result in real hurt, real pain. With various services given legal recourse to deny services to all trans people, those women who have argued for this change in the law on supposedly feminist grounds will have blood on their hands. Shame on them.