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News Feed: trans demo against “Swedish eugenics policy”

Worldwide protest at continuing insistence by the swedish government on what has been described as a policy of eugenics in respect of trans men and women led on Monday to the unusual sight of a demo outside that country’s London embassy. Read the rest of this entry »


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News Feed: 11 year-old girl committed to mental institution for being transgender

News that an 11 year old trans girl in Berlin, Germany, is about to be committed to a mental institution by local authorities – following intervention by her absent father – has prompted grave concern by the International LGBTQ Youth and Student Organisation (IGLYO). A petition has also been started on Read the rest of this entry »

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News Feed: Canada bans trans people from flying

Canada is now officially a transgender no-fly zone.

This is the result of new rules, introduced last July, but only now coming to light, which state that an air carrier “shall not transport a passenger if …the passenger does not appear to be of the gender indicated on the identification he or she presents”. Read the rest of this entry »


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News Feed: Trans fury at educational discrimination

The UK’s transgender community erupted in fury earlier this week at the news that a body established by government was planning to record on a single database the pre- and post-transition status of trans men and women.

News of the controversy first broke through a post on “Trans Youth takes on the world”. This revealed how the UK’s Higher Education Statistics Agency, in an effort to comply with its obligations under the Equality Act 2010, was proposing to re-structure its database to hold “legal gender” – or possibly “birth gender”, which is far from the same thing – as well as “identified gender”.

Unfortunately, their consultation process appears to have been conducted without actually consulting with any trans community organisations.

This drew condemnation from those who pointed out that not only was this approach offensive and deeply upsetting to many, but it also, potentially, breached the Gender Recognition Act 2004. Others noted that the HESA’s decision to reduce the categories that could be recorded in their new structure effectively erased intersex identity altogether.

Strong feelings were expressed on various forums around this issue, suggesting that the proposal will be an expensive failure: it will cost money to implement; and it will fail in its primary purpose of monitoring equality because the vast majority of trans individuals will simply refuse to comply with it.

A spokesman for HESA said: ”The 2012/13 HESA student and staff records are proposed to undergo a number of changes related to the Public Sector Equality Duty which falls on Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) under the Equality Act 2010. The specific changes and additions were proposed by the Equality Challenge Unit (ECU) – the organisation responsible for advancing equality and diversity in further and higher education.

“The change of name of the GENDER data field to SEX is also in line with advice and practice from the Information Standards Board and the Information Authority who collect information about Further Education.

“The concept of ‘legal’ sex in the HESA staff record relates to HEIs requirement to code staff as Female or Male for HMRC tax purposes.”

He later added that the HESA had had no intention of giving offence, and that they were open to hearing representations from individuals who might be concerned about these changes.

An individual who recently shredded her old birth certificate, is Sarah Brown, Lib Dem Councillor in Cambridge, last year voted one of the most influential trans activists in the UK.

She said: “There are ways to carry out equalities monitoring of the trans community without appearing to put on pressure or cause upset. A far better body to provide advice is the Equalities and Human Rights Commisison or a trans organisation.”


This expolosion – of pure anger – on the part of many in the trans community illustrates two truths. First, is the importance of the mantra “nothing about us without us”, which was initially popularized within the disabled rights movement.

HESA appears genuinely shocked and ready to listen: it would have been so much better if they had listened before.

Second is akey difference between trans and other minority groups, as reflected in the Gender Recognition Act. While some individuals towards the “gender queer” end of the spectrum may not be especially bothered by gender identity, for others it is the raison d’etre for all the pain and grief they have undergone throughout transition.

Thus, a significant section of the trans diaspora have, as their primary aim, invisibility. Out and proud in principle: but in practice, in local communities, ordinary everyday men and women.

Best practice in this area, if minorities ARE to be monitored, seems to be by means of anonymous data collection. It is to be hoped that the HESA get this – or they are about to spend a load of public money on a wholly pointless – and misleading – exercise.

Jane Fae

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News Feed: DWP deems patient in a coma is fit for work

Government attempts to “turn shirkers into workers” achieved new levels of dedication earlier this week, with the decision by ATOS, acting on behalf of the Department of Work and Pensions, that a patient in a coma was capable of work.
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News Feed: Tennessee dubbed “the state that likes to hate” following attempt to remove trans people from public life

Trans men and women around the world reacted in horror yesterday to a proposal tabled before the Tennessee General Assembly to criminalise anyone who used changing or rest room facilities that did not match the gender stated on their birth certificate.
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News Feed: Biting back: Philip Davies, MP rejects any suggestion of misuse of funds

Shipley MP, Philip Davies has firmly rejected any suggestion that he acted improperly in hosting a press releae for the Taxpayers’ Alliance on his personal website, which is funded by parliamentary allowances.
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