Labour Women Voices is an informal safe network for women in the Labour Party to exchange thoughts and ideas about politics, sex and gender. We respect the right of everyone, regardless of gender or other self-identification, to live their lives without fear or discrimination, provided only that there is no harm to others. To that… Continue reading Labour Women Voices Submission to the Labour National Policy Forum Consultation
Author: Hilary Burrage
Trans women in prison
There are reports in the UK and USA (amongst other countries) of women being forced to share prison accommodation with 'intact' natal men who self-ID as women. There are also reported incidences where female officers have been assaulted by trans men (and of natal women in prisons, already traumatised and powerless, being assaulted by male… Continue reading Trans women in prison
The Scottish legislation on the GRA Reform Bill
The Scotland GRA Reform Bill proposes changes to the Gender Recognition Act 2004, to enable a system of self-ID with no need for a diagnosis of gender dysphoria and a lowering of the age from 18 to 16 for a gender recognition certificate. Debate on this issue has been lively. Three responses to the consultation… Continue reading The Scottish legislation on the GRA Reform Bill
Anatomy, Biology, Physiology, Pregnancy And Surgery
A note on ‘sex’ and ‘gender’: There is sometimes confusion about the terms ‘sex’ and ‘gender’. On this website we use the term ‘sex’ as in a person’s status at birth (conception) as male or female. ‘Gender’ however is the term used to denote a person’s chosen, ascribed or assumed status as a girl /… Continue reading Anatomy, Biology, Physiology, Pregnancy And Surgery
The Tavistock Clinic: (Paediatric) Gender identity development service (GIDS) and Mermaids
The Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) is for children and young people, and their families, who experience difficulties in the development of their gender identity. It's a national specialised service, based in London and Leeds, and is the only one of its kind in Great Britain. A number of serious concerns about the service have… Continue reading The Tavistock Clinic: (Paediatric) Gender identity development service (GIDS) and Mermaids
Adult Female Human
Adult Human Female 'Mature' content https://vimeo.com/775343150 This is the first UK documentary feature to look at the clash between women’s rights and gender ideology. In record time, gender ideology has captured the big institutions. The police, the political parties, the media, the universities and major corporations have taken up the cause in the name of… Continue reading Adult Female Human
Titles, nouns and pronouns (Mx, ‘chest-feeding’ etc)
When should we use titles? Mx, Mr, Mrs, Miss, Ms? Or what? And with which pronouns, when? Here's an example of how one writer suggests 'maternity' matters might be trans-inclusive: The language of maternity is alive and well – so why not expand it to include trans parents? by Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett and this is… Continue reading Titles, nouns and pronouns (Mx, ‘chest-feeding’ etc)
Women’s refuges: Who needs single-sex spaces? Where and why?
In what circumstances does UK law permit single-sex spaces? And is the law as it stands adequate and properly administered? This is a recent judgement on single-sex spaces enablement What can be done to meet all needs and expectations? ** Unisex changing rooms put women in danger https://fairplayforwomen.com/unisex-changing-rooms-put-women-in-danger/ tbc
‘Gender’ education and training in the workplace
Training on equality, diversity and sexuality is becoming a routine part of in-service provision in many organisations; and now that training is often delivered by external providers. It has therefore become quite big business. The course content transparency that might be hoped for is not however always available because of claimed copyright, commercial and other… Continue reading ‘Gender’ education and training in the workplace
What are the implications of the June 2022 Roe vs Wade US Supreme Court judgement?
The June 2022 US Supreme Court judgement on abortion ('termination') is thought to have set back women's rights by half a century, How should feminists outside America view this judgement and what, if anything, can they do about it? How might this judgement impact on other areas of feminist concern? ** Fawcett, July 2022: Should… Continue reading What are the implications of the June 2022 Roe vs Wade US Supreme Court judgement?
What are the limits (if any) to being ‘inclusive’?
Is there a point where being 'inclusive' of one group may become significantly disadvantageous or damaging to another? How might any such disadvantage be best addressed? ** Here's UK Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries' view as at June 2022: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-10953147/NADINE-DORRIES-choose-fairness-inclusivity-sport.html tbc
Does the sex, gender and trans debate highlight conflicting human rights?
To what extent can these different claimed rights be resolved, and how? Conflicting rights is commonplace in equality legislation. It is necessary to find a balance for all concerned parties when considering new policies, or individuals needs. Equality Impact Assessment and Public Sector Equality Duty, require organisations to critically review their policies, assessing any impact… Continue reading Does the sex, gender and trans debate highlight conflicting human rights?
Must trans issues be contentious? Can they be discussed without angst?
Why does this sometimes occur, and how does it happen? What can be done to lower the temperature if / when things get heated? ** I’m not sure how to best handle this. An experience I keep having is someone shoehorns trans rights into left wing causes like Black Lives Matter (BLM) or Extinction Rebellion.… Continue reading Must trans issues be contentious? Can they be discussed without angst?
Public perceptions of sex, gender and trans-ID
This survey was undertaken in 2020, and the findings in the second set of questions follow from the conditions 'established' in the first set of responses. Do these views still stand? What can be the political messages gleaned from them? ** From the (UK) NHS: Gender identity and why it is important to ask about… Continue reading Public perceptions of sex, gender and trans-ID
Sex, gender and sport
This article (May 2022) by Emma Hilton provides a general picture of what 'the science' tells us about biological sex advantages in sport: What science tells us about transgender women athletes. Also of interest, by Jon Pike? A step change in sports policy: The UK Sports Councils’ new guidance on trans inclusion is a breath of… Continue reading Sex, gender and sport
Education: Schools and PHSRE
There have been some significant reports about how schools and students are responding to the 'trans debate'. These include Girl ‘driven out of school for questioning trans ideology’ Schoolgirls rejecting mixed toilets over boys’ bad behaviour Nadhim Zahawi: ‘Trans pupils should wear uniform they want — but sport is different’ . The Stranglehold of Transgender… Continue reading Education: Schools and PHSRE
What is a man? What specifically ‘male’ experiences may shape men’s lives?
We have already asked, 'What is a woman?' A parallel question must be asked, 'What is a man?' One answer which focuses on masculinity is provided by this recently published article in the Washington Post: The reinvention of a 'real man' tbc
What is a woman? How does our lived experience of bodily functions shape our lives?
The May 2022 Prospect Magazine has an article asking What is a Woman? https://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/magazine/what-is-a-woman-biology-identity And an earlier one by Angela Santini also asked What is a Woman? (Prospect Magazine, Summer 2021). https://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/magazine/what-is-a-woman Andy Lewis suggests that the proliferation of articles about this question is a deliberate attempt to eliminate the concept of woman in objective terms… Continue reading What is a woman? How does our lived experience of bodily functions shape our lives?
Is sex (as a category) really necessary?
A recent report has suggested that we ask whether the concept of 'sex' as a way to categorise people is really necessary. Pink News' headlines for 11 May 2022 are that 'Abolishing legal sex and gender comes with many, many pros, radical new report finds'. The Pink News report tell us that '... (UK) law… Continue reading Is sex (as a category) really necessary?
The meanings of words (TERF, CIS and other terms)
There are some words in the 'language' of sex and gender which many find objectionable. Examples might be 'CIS' and 'TERF'; but for outside observers these terms are meaningless. How can they - and maybe other similarly triggering terms? - be explained? Are they legitimate terms? [Read and discuss more about Language and terminology.] **… Continue reading The meanings of words (TERF, CIS and other terms)
Gender transitioning, recognition and single sex provisions.
Are the current UK arrangements for single sex services adequate? Some background: In the UK a change in gender of an adult can be confirmed by a Gender Recognition Certificate, a route to transitioning which has been available since the Gender Recognition Act of 2004, effective in April 2005. This 2004 Act was brought into… Continue reading Gender transitioning, recognition and single sex provisions.
At risk groups: Can trades unions help establish real risk levels?
There is debate about the reality of otherwise of risks for women, trans, gay and lesbian people and others in shared intimate spaces. Who must take responsibility for assessing the evidence of real risks to (variously defined) vulnerable groups? Do trades unions have a role here? And if so, how? Is there a tension between… Continue reading At risk groups: Can trades unions help establish real risk levels?
How important are biology and genetics?
We are all mammals, with much the same physical design as other similar animals. How much should this fact should affect our every day behaviour as wo/men is a matter of debate. What does 'the science' tell us? The issues are really around basic human / mammalian physiology and also psychology / behaviour. Human physiology… Continue reading How important are biology and genetics?
The psychology of sex, gender, groups and trauma
Two intersecting aspects of psychology may be particularly relevant to issues around sex and gender. One is self perception (who do I think I am?) and the other is group dynamics (how do the people around me / those with whom I associate) defend my / our identities? Every person has an identity and character… Continue reading The psychology of sex, gender, groups and trauma
Wellbeing and mental health
Some people find their concepts of themselves or others stressful or worrying. Who is at risk of such forms of distress? What evidence clarifies such distress? for various people at various times? And how can the people at risk best be supported? [Read and discuss more about Mental health and Psychology.] tbc
Labour Women Voices
Abortion (Roe vs Wade) Attitudes Biology vs Culture (Sex & Gender) Clinics Education & Training Equality Funding Health & Illness Human Rights Language & Terminology Legal & the Law Mental Health Politics Prisons Psychology Research & Reading Research Safety Single Sex / Spaces Social Inclusion Sport Tavistock … Continue reading Labour Women Voices
Reading and references: Websites
There are several other websites which focus on the politics of sex and gender in the UK: [Read and discuss more about various categories of References.] https://labourwomensdeclaration.org.uk/ https://women-uniting.co.uk/ https://sex-matters.org/ https://www.stonewall.org.uk/about-us https://www.tht.org.uk/ Wikipedia: Feminist views on transgender topics: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminist_views_on_transgender_topics** The EHRC guidance on single sex spaces here : https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/advice-and-guidance/what-equality-act-says-about-protected-characteristics-sex-and-gender https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/advice-and-guidance/separate-and-single-sex-service-providers-guide-equality-act-sex-and-gender https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/advice-and-guidance/when-you-can-provide-separate-or-single-sex-service https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/advice-and-guidance/gender-reassignment-provisions-equality-act ** Fair play for… Continue reading Reading and references: Websites
Reading and references: Social media
Please share here Facebook, Twitter and other social media which bring together news about politics, sex and gender - the relevance and reasonableness of which are yours to decide: Twitter Sex Matters: @SexMattersOrg Amanda trans rights = human rights: @AmandaQuirk Gender Critical Autistics: @GCAutistics Aaron Terrell: @elegationvain Gender-Critical Citations: @terfcitations WeAreFairCop: @WeAreFairCop EdinburghTransWomen: @edintranswome Black Trans… Continue reading Reading and references: Social media
Reading and references: Books
Many books have been written about the politics of sex and gender. [Read and discuss more about various categories of References.] We list here just a few: Joyce, Helen (2021), TRANS: When Ideology Meets Reality, One World Publications, London Stock, Kathleen (2021), Material Girls: Why Reality Matters for Feminism, Fleet, London
Reading and references: Articles, papers and reports
Here are a few of the many articles and papers which have been written in recent times about the politics of sex and gender: [Read and discuss more about various categories of References.] Law and legal cases: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-8969/ https://www.theguardian.com/law/2022/apr/29/barrister-allison-bailey-stonewall-discriminated-against-for-gender-critical-views-tribunal-hears Single sex spaces https://4w.pub/female-prisoners-forced-to-share-showers-with-intact-males/ Physiology and genetics: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/sex-redefined-the-idea-of-2-sexes-is-overly-simplistic1/ https://fairplayforwomen.com/chromosomes-biological-sex-gender/ https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/differences-in-sex-development/ https://www.genome.gov/27557513/the-y-chromosome-beyond-gender-determination https://www.genome.gov/about-genomics/fact-sheets/Y-Chromosome-facts https://www.genome.gov/27557513/the-y-chromosome-beyond-gender-determination#:~:text=The%20X%20and%20Y%20chromosomes,only%20pass%20on%20X%20chromosomes). https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fcell.2019.00388/full https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/q-a-mixed-sex-biology/ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7415463/… Continue reading Reading and references: Articles, papers and reports