Gender Recognition Act debate in Bloomsbury Church
Speeches against gender self-determination but Trans rights protest outside
09 March, 2018 — By Helen Chapman
A gender neutral toilet
A DEBATE about the Gender Recognition Act, which would allow people to self-identify as women instead of going through medical changes, was held in the Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church.
The location of the event, organised by campaign group Woman’s Place UK (WPUK), was only revealed a few hours before it began for fear of disruption. A group of activists protested against the debate under the slogan “Trans rights are women’s rights”.
All mainstream political parties support the proposed changes to the Act, which would make it easier for those who self- identify as women to be on all-female shortlists. But WPUK has criticised plans to reform the Act because of the importance of women-only spaces. The panel included Steph Pike from WPUK and community campaigner Pilgrim Tucker.
Ms Pike said: “We have to be able to talk about female bodies. Sex matters because if we cannot talk about sex, then we cannot talk about sexism.”
Also on the panel was firefighter Lucy Masoud, who spoke about the importance of having sex-segregated changing facilities and showers in the workplace, and being the only female in a team of 16 when first joining the London Fire Brigade in 2005.