A statement from the interim committee of the Northern Independence Party on transphobia.
As the first political party in the UK to have a co-leader that is trans, NIP is proud to stand and fight for both trans and non-binary people. We are made stronger by the significant LGBTQ+ representation in our party. We will continue to fight for trans liberation and equality.
It is devastating however to see the continued hate campaign waged against one of the most marginalised groups in the UK by all of the mainstream political parties and a large section of the media. In England, every political party has contributed to the climate of fear in which trans and non-binary people now live - either by harboring and protecting openly transphobic politicians or by maintaining silence while proposals to remove rights and protections for trans and non-binary people are pushed forward.
Recent examples of this vile campaign are sadly almost too numerous to list - the recent proposal by Women’s Human Rights Campaign (WHRC) to “eliminate transgenderism” and revoke the Gender Recognition Act stands out as particularly egregious. That politicians in Westminster - in the Women and Equalities Select Committee no less - should even be considering making a group of people illegal brings shame to the institutions they claim to uphold. The national broadcaster uncritically platforms anonymous pressure groups condemned as hate groups to justify denying healthcare to trans teens and gives awards to essays which compare all trans women to perpetrators of domestic violence. The UK has become notorious as ‘TERF Island’ around the world - just another reason to make us want to smash the Union.
We acknowledge also that there are reasons to be hopeful. It was heartening to see MP Alicia Kearns’ proposal to ban conversion therapy explicitly include conversion therapy used on trans and non-binary people. We are pleased to see that the SNP has recently made a strong statement in support of trans rights, and look forward to seeing them put their words into action. Lord Michael Cashman has been a consistent and caring ally to the trans community. President Biden, while an imperfect leader on many issues in our view, has openly included trans and non-binary people in his rhetoric and affirmed their right to equality in the USA. We hope this heralds a turning of the tide.
The government recently concluded a consultation on reform of the Gender Recognition Act, and sadly decided not to implement most of the recommendations. Legislative changes that would dramatically improve trans lives, and get closer to equality for all include:
- Reforming the Gender Recognition Act in line with the recent consultation to make the process easier, cheaper and more positive - including the adoption of self ID and removal of the need for spousal consent.
- Improving access to healthcare - introducing informed consent in line with other similar treatments, reducing waiting times to comply with NHS guidelines, and embedding trans healthcare within the wider NHS, rather than separated in a handful of clinics.
- Providing legal recognition for non-binary people.
- Including gender identity as a category in hate speech legislation - a move that would also protect cis women and ensure misogynistic as well as transphobic hate crimes are treated with the seriousness of other hate speech.
We reject the attempts of a few to turn the question of equality into one of hate. Supporting trans and non-binary people does not mean hating cis women. Demonising trans people - who simply want to live their lives as themselves - has become a national pursuit in this broken Union. It’s time for politicians, the media and all decent people to stand against hate and fight for trans liberation.
We are proud as a Party to fight this fight alongside the rainbow family and their allies. We call on Labour, the Conservatives, the Greens, the Liberal Democrats and every political party in this country to join us, and those already doing good work in their parties, to loudly and proudly denounce transphobia, and begin ensuring equality for all.
The interim Northern Independence Party Committee