Well my fears seem to be proving to be well founded. Jo Maugham a director of an organisation for which I have a lot of respect and time for, The Good Law Project, has commented with his view of the present government direction on trans rights saying “what is being done to Trans people in the United Kingdom is awful. I have no words. I am afraid to express my anger and shame.” His comments are on the basis that the new Prime Minister plans to amend the Equality Act to remove legal protections form Trans people.
As he points out there is no reason why he cannot do this if he so choses. The Prime Minister has a majority in the House of Commons and if he is able to carry a majority, as Jo Maugham points out, “he can remove the rights of whichever friendless minority he decides to target”.
The EqualityAct is a reserved matter in the devolved nations of the United Kingdom which means any changes would also apply to Scotland and Wales. Jo Maugham’s view is that amending the Equality Act will not be easy and that he thinks the most likely outcome will be to remove trans rights for those who do not have a Gender Recognition Certificate. As Scotland is in the process of legislating to make access to a Gender Recognition Certificate simpler then Scotland may well remain a more friendly trans nation.
Jo Maugham’s summary is that “(I think) that trans people who can qualify can likely lead better lives by leaving England”. What a sad state of affairs. I am glad I have made the move.
There is more discussion about how difficult it will become and how on earth any such laws could be enforced policing single sex spaces. What also seems to be a growing sense of unease is that the opposition to trans rights is but a first stepping stone in reducing rights in other groups. The current Prime Minister has appointed to Ministers to the Equality brief who do not support abortion rights. As in the U.S.A the attacks on Trans rights was followed quickly by anti abortion and anti gay legislation. The right wing politics that are increasingly more powerful in UK politics would seem to have a similar agenda. Legislation curbing the right to protest, for unions to strike are already in the pipeline.
I worry where this will all end. It is time for people to stand up against the reduction of rights and liberties to protect against this parliaments ability to “remove the rights of whichever friendless minority (they) decide to target”.