Loose Women’s India Willoughby: I apologise for trans toilets comments

April 4, 2017
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PinkNews Exclusive
Transgender Loose Women panellist India Willoughby has apologised for comments around gendered toilets.

On Transgender Day of Visibility, the journalist and former newsreader wrote an article for PinkNews titled, “unless you are transitioning, stay out of the ladies”.

The popular Loose Women panellist has now apologised for the comments, which caused a considerable backlash online, saying she believes her argument was “all types is wrong.”

Willougby had written: “It’s all too easy at the moment for someone to claim transgender rights who isn’t actually transgender. And it’s making life dangerous. Soon, someone is going to get seriously hurt.

“Unless you are transitioning, stay out of the ladies. Pulling on a frock as and when the mood takes doesn’t cut it. You don’t have a God-given right to go into female-only spaces.

“That might make some dressers cross, but it’s the truth.”

She has now issued an apology, saying that she apologises to “anyone who felt upset or let down with the article”.

She told PinkNews: “The last few days have been an education and a reminder.

“Having listened to a lot of moving stories, the line my article took on toilet use by trans people of all types is wrong.

“Someone may not be in a position where they can or are able to transition, for a whole host of reasons.

“Family. Money. Or simply fear of what the future might bring. All three applied to me for many years.

“They are still trans. No-one should be scared or worried about being themselves, in any environment.

“To anyone who felt upset or let down with the article, I apologise.

“I am aware I am very lucky to have a platform, and I most certainly want to use it for the good of LGBT people.

“While we all may disagree from time to time, I certainly don’t want anyone to hurt, or feel stigmatised.”

Willoughby came to fame after she returned to screens after her transition.

She had presented the news for the ITV Border region for more than a decade under her former name, presenting as male.

Six years on, she has returned to ITV as a journalist for the Tyne Tees region – this time as a woman.

Ms Willoughby previously spoke out about her sturggle working as a man, as she struggled to repress her female self.

She said: “It’s really difficult, it’s like holding your breath underwater. Every now and again I would come up for air by taking myself on a weekend somewhere and live as a woman.”

Speaking of her return to TV as an out trans person, she said: “I don’t think that there have been people like me in the public eye in this country before – I wouldn’t want to make myself out to be some kind of an example or anything but it just shows how the nature of TV has changed for the better.

“I don’t think that I would have been accepted a few years ago.”

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