Trans campaigners are asking employers to be true allies this Pride month – by writing to the UK government asking them not to introduce a new law that is ‘terrifying’ trans Brits.
It comes after Liz Truss, the government’s Minister for Women and Equalities, implied she would limit trans access to ‘single sex spaces’.
And in the same speech, she also implied the government would stop the NHS from providing appropriate medical care for trans youth.
The trans community now fears this means a ‘bathroom bill’ preventing them from using the right toilets may be coming.
Without such a basic right, they argue that trans people will no longer be able to do basic day-to-day things like shopping and socialising.
Moreover, trans women fear any new law will particularly target them.
Indeed, as GSN exclusively reported yesterday, many trans women are thinking of leaving the UK and even seeking asylum.
‘Clear message’ from Truss
Trans campaigners say they became even more alarmed by Liz Truss’ plans when she confirmed them in a letter to Conservative member of the House of Lords Baroness Nicholson.
In her reply to Nicholson, she said she had ‘made my commitment to protecting single sex spaces for women and girls clear’.
Moreover, she added future government guidance will give ‘a clear message to service providers, schools and others, putting their ability to provide single sex spaces beyond doubt’.
Meanwhile Truss has offered to ban dangerous gay ‘conversion therapy’. But her ban may disappoint campaigners against ‘gay cures’ as it may not have the force of law.
Furthermore, it only mentions sexuality-based conversion therapy. That implies she may not protect trans and non-binary people from so-called ‘therapy’ targeting their gender identity.
Employers: Ask government to protect the ‘dignity and safety’ of trans people
Now trans campaigners want employees to get their bosses to help.
They want employers to write to Liz Truss. The letter should ask the government to protect the ‘dignity and safety’ of trans people.
Trans Media Watch co-founder Helen Belcher told GSN: ‘Trans people are feeling ignored and afraid.
‘But there is something we can do in the short term.
‘People who are employed could talk to their employers, and those at school or college could talk to their principals. Talk about how important it is that trans people are welcomed and included in the workplace, and how it is a positive thing.’
You should encourage your employer, school or university to write to Truss.
Letters will be more powerful if you also send a copy to the relevant cabinet minister for your sector. For example, Matt Hancock (health), Gavin Williamson (education), George Eustice (agriculture), Alok Sharma (general business).
Belcher says: ‘Ask that the letter includes the importance of respecting trans people and ensuring they are safe. Letters should add that the organisation would not welcome having to rewrite diversity and inclusion policies.
‘And ask to see any reply.’
Moreover, Belcher points out this is good for business. When the state of North Carolina passed a similar bathroom bill in the US, it paid a heavy economic price.
She said: ‘Businesses in the States decided they couldn’t do business in North Carolina and the state lost around $4billion of inward investment in a matter of weeks.
‘And in a post-Brexit Britain, you can’t take those risks.’