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Liz Truss recognises IDAHOBIT despite launching the biggest attack on trans rights in modern British history

Josh Milton May 17, 2020
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Minister for Women and Equalities Liz Truss arrives at Downing Street on 14 February, 2020. (WIktor Szymanowicz/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

British equalities minister Liz Truss recognised International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersexism and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT) on Sunday morning (May 17), sparking confusion and outrage from LGBT+ people online.

Truss is currently spearheading her office’s plans for the UK’s Gender Recognition Act reforms, which attracted immediate bipartisan concerns from parents of trans youth, LGBT+ organisations and political parties alike.

Many interpreted her plans as a direct threat to the currently available healthcare for trans youth in the UK, while some have wearily dubbed them the “successor” of Magaret Thatcher’s Section 28, which banned the “promotion of homosexuality”.

The lawmaker recognised IDAHOBIT on Twitter, sharing a photograph of a Pride flag and imploring how the Tory government is “proud of the progress [the UK] has made on LGBT rights”.

She also noted the government’s upcoming global LGBT+ conference, Safe to be Me, which she said will “further the cause”.

What followed was a three-pronged critique of Truss’ tweet by LGBT+ rights advocates.

Many referenced the minister’s recent track record on trans rights, the surging rates of anti-LGBT+ hate crime in England and Wales across the last five years and the UK’s plummeting position in international equality rankings.

Liz Truss accused of ‘hypocrisy’ after recognising IDAHOBIT, a day that raises awareness of LGBT+ rights violations. 

Countless LGBT+ Twitter users skewered Truss’ IDAHOBIT tweet.

What are the Tories’ planned GRA reforms?

The Conservative Party leader of the Government Equalities Office set out the plan at a virtual meeting of the women and equalities select committee in April.

Liz Truss: Every major political party slams 'troubling' attack on trans youth
But the backlash to equalities minister Liz Truss’ comments has not just come from the opposition – it has come from across the political spectrum in the UK. (Photo by WIktor Szymanowicz/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

She said that the government response to 2018’s comprehensive public consultation on reforming the GRA would follow three “very important principles”, one of which is “making sure that the under 18s are protected from decisions that they could make, that are irreversible in the future”.

“I believe strongly that adults should have the freedom to lead their lives as they see fit, but I think it’s very important that while people are still developing their decision-making capabilities that we protect them from making those irreversible decisions,” Truss added.

Healthcare for trans under 18s is not governed by the GRA.

Her comments attracted condemnation from every major political party.

More: gender recognition act, idahobit, international day against homophbia and transphobia, Lizz Truss, Trans, trans rights, Twitter, UK

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