Women’s Groups Protest Transgender Conference: Demand Representation in Debates over ‘Transgender Equality’

June 15, 2016

protest 2

Photo from Twiter


London – Furious at the impending erasure of women’s rights resulting from the 2015 Parliamentary Women and Equalities Committee Report headed by the Conservative Party’s Maria Miller, women representing a coalition of feminist, progressive, and lesbian organizations picketed today’s Westminster Social Policy Forum on Transgender Rights.


Protesters expressed outrage at the Committee’s recommendation to remove sex-based protections for women and girls by erasing the protected category of ‘sex’ and replacing it with an undefined category of ‘gender identity’. The proposed change would eliminate the ability of women to seek redress under law for sex discrimination and sex inequality. Such violations would no longer be recognized by the state as the category of ‘sex’ itself would no longer exist.


If the Equality Committee’s recommendations go forth as planned, the elimination of legal sex as a protected class will be replaced by an individual’s declaration of their subjective and internal gender-based “feelings”. This would give men who proclaim such gender feelings the legal right to expose themselves in women’s locker rooms and other single-sex facilities where public nudity occurs and where women are particularly vulnerable. Convicted male prisoners who proclaim gender feelings will be housed in cells with confined female prisoners who will have no legal grounds to object. Men will have the right to compete in women’s sports, apply for women’s scholarships, and the right to serve as female proxies by occupying affirmative action slots which formerly served to address sex inequality in women’s representation in public life. Single-sex rape crisis services, women’s refuges, lesbian public events, will become illegal on the grounds they discriminate against the gender feelings of men.


From a flyer distributed at the protest:


Women’s voices are being ignored and our rights eroded in the name of ‘transgender equality’. Current policy recommendations regarding transgender rights have a potentially adverse effect on women in a number of ways:


  • The pressure on parents to accept a trans diagnosis for a gender non-conforming child, based on gender stereotypes of clothing and toy preferences; or in the case of teenagers, to give in to the social media contagion to which they might be susceptible.


  • The threat to current sex-based rights, which keep males and females segregated in public places where women and girls might be physically vulnerable. These include toilets, changing rooms, rape crisis centres, refuges, hospital wards and prisons.


  • The inclusion of male-bodied, male-socialised people, into areas of success and achievement where women currently have their own space in order to make competition fair or to level the playing field. These include sports, prizes and awards, shortlists and quotas.


  • The negative affect on the lesbian community of the pressure on young women to identify as trans rather than as lesbian. There is also pressure to accept male-bodied self-identified ‘lesbians’ as sexual partners.


  • The skewing of national statistics regarding crime, due to the higher rate of offending by male transitioners as opposed to women, with possible knock-on effects on funding for women’s services.


  • The effect on the ‘trans widows’ of men (and it mostly is men) who transition in middle age. There is nowhere for these women to turn: all the help and support is directed towards the ‘trans’ person.


  • The changing of language pertinent to women and girls in order to make it more trans-inclusive, thereby making ‘women’s issues’ impossible to talk about. This includes the use of such terms as ‘pregnant people’ by health providers.



No women’s groups were invited to testify at the 2015 Women’s and Equalities Committee hearings on the largest proposed rollback to the legal status of women since the birth of the Suffrage Movement.

The Independent covered the growing outrage in January of this year, reporting on Committee Chair MP Maria Miller: “The former Culture secretary said she was taken aback by the “extraordinary” hostility from a minority of women “purporting to be feminists”.

“The only negative reaction that I’ve seen has been by individuals purporting to be feminists,” Miller went on to say.

Fellow committee member, Labour MP Jess Phillips, was quoted as saying: “Some feminists prioritise gender equality above all else, but I think we should also do our bit to promote general equality.”


Today’s public forum at Congress Centre in London was organized by the same individuals behind the proposal to erase legal sex-based protections for women and girls. From the event page:

We are delighted to include at this seminar keynote addresses from Jackie Driver, Director, Funded Programmes, Equality and Human Rights Commission; Will Huxter, Regional Director of Specialised Commissioning (London) and Chair, Gender Identity Task and Finish Group, NHS England and Ade Rawcliffe, Creative Diversity Manager, Channel 4.

Helen Belcher, Trustee, Trans Media Watch; Dr Polly Carmichael, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Director, Gender Identity Development Service, Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust; Peter Dawson, Deputy Director, Prison Reform Trust; Dave Frost, Vice-Chair, LGBT Committee, Equity; Susie Green, Chief Executive Officer, Mermaids UK; Dr Debbie Hayton, Head of Physics, King Henry VIII School, Coventry, West Midlands; Member, NASUWT and Member, TUC LGBT Committee; Delia Johnston, Specialist Diversity Consultant, Trans in Sport; Anna Lee, Vice President, Welfare and Community, Lancaster University Students’ Union; Megan Key, Equalities Manager, National Probation Service; Steve Mulcahy, Headteacher, Richard Lander School, Cornwall have also agreed to speak.

Baroness Barker, Vice Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Rights and Ruth Cadbury MP, Member, Women and Equalities Committee have kindly agreed to chair this seminar.

The agenda [http://www.westminsterforumprojects.co.uk/forums/agenda/transgender-equality-2016-agenda.pdf]

protest 3

Photo from Twitter

Women’s groups represented at the protest include the Women and Girls Equality Network, Transgender Trend, UK Lesbian Rights Group, and Parents Campaigning for Sex Equality for Children, among others.

Another flyer from protesters:

flyer 2




Photo from Twitter

57 Responses to “Women’s Groups Protest Transgender Conference: Demand Representation in Debates over ‘Transgender Equality’”

  1. Bob Doublin Says:

    This is an incredible effort.Thank you to the women doing this. And thanks for publicizing it GallusMag.

  2. donesoverydone Says:

    Reblogged this on things I've read or intend to.

  3. Mary Sunshine Says:

    Reblogged this on Female Biology Matters and commented:
    “Protesters expressed outrage at the Committee’s recommendation to remove sex-based protections for women and girls by erasing the protected category of ‘sex’ and replacing it with an undefined category of ‘gender identity’. The proposed change would eliminate the ability of women to seek redress under law for sex discrimination and sex inequality. Such violations would no longer be recognized by the state as the category of ‘sex’ itself would no longer exist.

  4. sarineal Says:

    That’s truly brave. Thank you to those standing there in protest, standing up for women.

  5. kaypasser Says:

    ..they couldnt even clarify the difference between sex and gender.. the people who are writing these policies and running these conferences dont even realise there IS a difference between sex and gender.. thats how ‘educated’ they are. thats as far as they understand it.. biology doesnt matter.. its all about the feelz.

  6. Dogtowner Says:

    I would like to see similar protests here in the U.S. I would organize one if I could find a few radical feminists here in the boonies, but the message everywhere seems to be embrace the trans.

    There are advantages to living in a smaller country. They seem to organize a lot more protests in the U.K. on a variety of topics than we have.

  7. atryingthing Says:

    Bless these women. We see you and appreciate you.

  8. GallusMag Says:

    Some creative anti-feminist anti-lesbian “journalism” from the gay men here. Thanks, “brothers”!


    Anti-trans backlash reaches UK as protesters demand British ‘bathroom ban’
    Nick Duffy 15th June 2016, 4:38 PM

    Furore about transgender people using public bathrooms has made it to UK shores – with protesters outside a Parliamentary equalities conference today demanding a bathroom ban.
    More than 20 bills have been filed across the United States in recent months attempting to repeal vital LGBT rights protections, purportedly in order to stop transgender women from using the female bathrooms.
    Many of the Republican-backed bills actually have wider implications for LGBT equality as they create exemptions from anti-discrimination protections, as do laws passed in North Carolina and Mississippi.
    The issue has now landed on UK shores – with a protest outside the Westminster Social Policy Forum on trans issues today, which was hosted by Labour MP Ruth Cadbury and Lib Dem peer Baroness Barker.
    The forum was aimed at discussing “how transgender equality issues are dealt with by Whitehall departments and agencies, as well as how they are treated by schools, the NHS and the criminal justice system”, as well as “steps for achieving transgender equality, and how legislation – including the Gender Recognition Act, the Equality Act 2010 and the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act – is working for trans people”.
    However anti-trans campaigners staged a protest outside the venue, Congress House.
    The protesters held signs demanding “No trans in womens toilets” and “no trans in womens changing rooms” – aping the rhetoric recently seen among the American Hard Right.

    Some of the other signs read: “You can’t change biological sex, fact!”, and “lesbian rights are women’s rights. We are not trans”.
    Baroness Barker told PinkNews: “I was delighted to chair this important event at which the needs of trans and non binary people were discussed with a wide range of people from government, professional organisations, academia and civil society.
    “There was a palpable sense of people from different backgrounds being willing to listen, learn and understand.
    “More than ever the LGBT community needs to be supportive and stand together in solidarity. Today, along with cis, straight allies, the majority did.”
    The British Humanist Association wrote: “It will be an extremely depressing turn of events if this ridiculous aspect of the US culture wars takes hold over here.”

    • GallusMag Says:

      “Transwomen” in comments:

      Hey Laurel! Where are ye?

      • Lesbians are no threat to straight women in washrooms. We see other women as human beings.

      • kesher Says:

        I certainly would be well satisfied if Mr. Perduta would use the penis room where he belongs.

      • GallusMag Says:

        Is that him????

      • Oak and Ash Says:

        Not that zombie argument again! Where did I put my machete?

        To anyone making this argument: I’m a straight woman who doesn’t feel threatened by lesbians in women’s spaces, for the reason purplesagefem mentions. (Some of you guys might want to look up “projection” on Wikipedia.)

        And white knights in the men’s room? You’ve got to be kidding.

      • k.jane Says:

        I’m sick of how perverts like him are lumping us lesbians in the same category as him. But then again, not surprised by it. Rape is NOT about sexual attraction. It’s about power.

        And unlike him, lesbians respect other lesbians and non-lesbian women.

      • Janetwo Says:

        I second Oak and Ash. I am straight and I never had any issue with lesbians. Not even unwelcomed flirtation once I made my sexual orientation clear. I wish I could say the same with het men. I think there are so few women not respecting other women boundaries that it does not register as an issue for het women to share space with lesbians. It would be like somebody from Florida fearing an encounter witth a polar bear on the beach. Technically, there must me some sexually predatory women but it is statistically so insignificant that the vast majority of women never experienced it and therefore does not fear it. On the contrary, most women apprehension about men is conditioned by past experiences.

      • gchild Says:

        I don’t know why they keep tryin to make “fear lesbians” in womens spaces a thing. Even jokingly. It just proves how preposterously male they are.

        Males who hate, ridicule, or resent lesbians scare the absolute shit out of most women. Including straight women cause we know they are really just mysogynists who are likely to treat us like shit.

        Making lesbophobic jokes/remarks only makes them appear more dangerous to all women and girls.

    • lr1290 Says:

      Wow the transactivists sound so scared in the comments over there. A lot of “hahaha” and “bigot” but no actual logic, as usual.

  9. Miep Says:

    Reblogged this on There Are So Many Things Wrong With This and commented:
    Our case gets presented this coherently and we get called “fake feminists.” That is the best some people can come up with. Pure ad hominem. Men are women if they say they are, women are not feminists if people who center men say we’re not.

    Thank you protesters!

  10. lovetruthcourage Says:

    I admire the efforts of these brave protestors, who are drawing attention to this enormous, historic erasure of women. It is really scary, what a stalking horse trans has become. Instead of just advocating for their own rights, trans insists on rolling back women’s progress. Then this tripe is repackaged, and sold to the general public as a progressive movement, backed by the LGB. No wonder so many are confused. Thank you, clear-eyed women protestors!

    • rheapdx1 Says:

      @lovetruthcourage It is bad enough that Affirmative Action and Title IX in the US have been ‘gamed’ by the (mostly WASPISH) ‘t’ movement. Now this crap had spread….damnit. This will end when people wake up to see the smoke and mirrors act.

      Just as a thought….someone should recommend that copies of various and multiple police/other reports be passed to the MP’s, at every possible chance. Also if someone says being against these proposed changes is ‘phobic’, it needs to be said this is not the case. There has been a need for protections and programs in the past, to make the system more fair to those who have been left out, by attitudes much like the same ones the Kool-aid drinkers are showing now.

  11. Thank you for taking your brave stand

    • GallusMag Says:

      YESSSS! A surprisingly accurate and well reported summary! Thanks!

    • Janetwo Says:

      The recognition by MSM of gendertrender as an important voice for feminism is both well deserved and overdue. Congratulation Gallus!
      And indeed, for once, the coverage sounded like actual reporting, not the usual trans opinion piece. Maybe somebody woke up in the newsroom.

  12. Carrie-Anne Says:

    These protestors are awesome! I wish there were an event like that in my area, so I could protest too. So many people I know have obediently swilled down the Trans, Inc. Kool-Aid, and don’t understand what exactly transactivists have been doing. It’s like 50 years of progress on women’s rights is going down the toilet faster and faster, all because of MEN.

  13. Guls Says:

    I often read/hear ‘why are you so obsessed with genitals’ (and) ‘where are the FtM in this? Why is no-one talking about them/us?’ It’s obvious – the penis is the original weapon of mass destruction – I’ve never heard a man express panic that a FtM woman might use his toilet. Women have to use male toilets all the time when there aren’t enough for them, and my concern is for their safety not mine. Even at Brighton Pride I’ve seen women heckled when ‘borrowing’ our loos. Gay men are often just as territorial. The threat simply doesn’t cut both ways. That ‘queer’ activism and space is so often virulently anti-female should tell us something – and I can’t believe Maria Miller got to where she did without knowing she was drinking from a poisoned chalice.

  14. G Says:

    Hurray…finally I am reading more organizations.. people getting involved to speak out and fight against this craziness…this madness. I am concern about our rights, safety for woman and children. It also seems as though, they are trying to replace women..with transgender men?

  15. Bev Jo Says:

    Thank you so much for this, Gallus Mag. I wish to hell it could happen in the U.S.

  16. Una Hodgkins Says:

    Dear Transgender protesters,
    I live in London. I am a transwidow. I want the voices of transwidows and parents of transkids to be heard.
    We must BE PART of these meetings, not merely protesting outside the building. Of course we seem like a minority if we adopt this role.
    It is time to stand up and with authoritative voices debunk the “equalities” agenda, which is based on a misconception that Trans people on the one hand and LGB on the other share problems about “sexual orientation”. We know that this is not the case, but the ignorant wider word – including regrettably Maria Miller – do not know this.
    How can I be notified in time to attend and be a speaker?

  17. Ben X Says:

    Congratulations, totally excellent real females! Your visibility seems to be be picking up.

  18. transwidow Says:

    “The effect on the ‘trans widows’ of men (and it mostly is men) who transition in middle age. There is nowhere for these women to turn: all the help and support is directed towards the ‘trans’ person.”

  19. Elle Says:

    The flyer points out “the effect on the ‘trans widows’ of men (and it mostly is men) who transition in middle age. There is nowhere for these women to turn: all the help and support is directed towards the ‘trans’ person.”

    As a trans widow, I appreciate the inclusion of our plight. There truly was nowhere to turn a decade ago, and there are still very few safe places where we can say the truth—that the person we married was not, is not, and never will be a woman.

    • atranswidow Says:

      Yes, ”all help and support is directed towards the ‘trans’ person.”

      Thank you to these women. It is very meaningful to be included in the list. It is so frustrating to be so far away from the UK. I wish I could join you.

  20. Una Hodgkins Says:

    I have just written three e-mails to Ruth Cadbury, the co-chair of the yesterday’s meeting. She is the MP for Brentworth and Isleworth and coincidentally supporting a campaign to save NHS hospitals in West London, with which I am also very active. She knows me. I will not rest until I bend her ear about this.

  21. amintacyprian Says:

    Hey Gallus I got on a fight on Twitter about this! And by the goddess that people are insane! I mean they can’t endure hear about a different opinion and all must be assimilated to the trans-Borg. I get paid on the 28th so consider a new donation to the site and for the book. I mean wtf?!
    PS: I’m from south America so sorry if my English is badly written

  22. Janetwo Says:

    And on the positive side, apparently boycotts work. Who knew?

    “Company executives also made the bold claim that its absurd stance on bathrooms hasn’t impacted the company’s financial performance in any way,” Danhof said, referring to the 18 percent drop in shares the company experienced in seven weeks. “That’s a whopper! Target’s stock price was $83.98 the day of the announcement. On Monday, it was $68.81 … For Target to deny any correlation between its announcement and its tanking stock is ignorance of the highest form. Offending millions of investors and consumers, then denying the financial implications, borders on fiduciary negligence.”
    From: http://www.wnd.com/2016/06/creepy-peepers-target-hit-with-wave-of-men-snooping-on-teens/

    From the comments, I would suggest LGBT organisations to drop the T as so much toxic waste that can potentially roll back their progress for a long time. As sympathetic many het people are to gays, they will put their safety and chidlren safety before anything else. When T issues are linked with gay ones, it put people into the untainable position of choosing between supporting the gay community and endangering women rights. Here in Canada, after the terrible Orlando shooting, politicians were making statements condoning both homophobia and transphobia as if they were the same things and as if people supporting the gay community was automatically pro-trans. That perception needs to be changed as quickly as possible. And get rid of the libfems by the same token. These idiots accomplished less than zero for women. We are still riding on the progress brought by the second wave feminists.

  23. red Says:

    I think this can be used in NA. Parts of anyway.

    Send text within your email, not a link.

    Start here: “The pressure on parents…”
    End here: “…health providers.”

    No hyperbolic heads.

    Use a name email addy. Congratulate them on the last article they did about ‘gender’, sexuality or any other article where you can say “Thank you for your article on XXX. I was impressed by how fairly you told this difficult story.”

    Then, request they read this as I’ve said above^^ and give a BROKEN link to the UK site. Because some media security is set to recognize and blow off any email with a link.

    Use formal civil language with a professional tone. Maybe “next time” you do this, they’ll respond. Don’t expect it this time. If you have titles or own a business put it under your name.

  24. THANK GOD. FINALLY! To all the brave women willing to stand up in the face of being cast as bigots and “TERFS” and claim our rights as biological females, I salute and support you! Thank you.


  25. Panda Says:

    Christ… Don’t you all have cats to feed or something?

  26. May Loo Says:

    Good for the protestors. It’s time someone spoke up for the 50% of the population who are born women. Enough of this trans nonsense. Maria Miller is probably the kind of conservative woman who probably doesn’t believe women are being oppressed anyway.

    • May Loo Says:

      Update the Canadian government has passed Bill C-16 which will make protections gender-based rather than sex-based. Appalling. I generally vote Liberal, but this is just ridiculous. And of course I got shut down by the politicians I thought were supposed to represent me. I might have to vote Conservative. Horrors. Or maybe next federal election, I won’t vote as a protest to all the parties who voted for this legislation.

      • GallusMag Says:

        Why bother voting conservative? This conservative female MP knew full well the harms of Bill C-16 but she voted for it anyway:

      • red Says:

        Why bother voting? Just quit fooling yourself it makes any difference what or who you vote. Don’t vote. Don’t buy their media, The politicians KNOW trans are ;men. That’s why they work for them. Not you. Never you. None of them will work for youi, not even the few women who were put into office by men. Not even the ones that call themselves feminist. Nor the ones who are open Lesbians. Especially not the ones who claim a history of “sex work”, not the ones who are Indigenous (they hate you, you know that?). Turn your back on the whole mess and find some women to join you in a pot luck at the nearest wildernes campground.

      • lovetruthcourage Says:

        Turning your back won’t make it go away.

      • red Says:

        …go high, take your cleats and your ice gear. That’s about the ONLY place you won’t find these mincing fuck-me shoed, wig and face planning enhanced manicuired assholes.

  27. May Loo Says:

    To Gallus. That is my dilemma. Which is why I may not vote in the next federal election after almost 40 years of being able to do so.

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