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Pansexual MP Layla Moran demands Liz Truss explain her ‘retrograde’ rollback of trans rights in front of parliament

Vic Parsons June 15, 2020
Layla Moran: Liz Truss must face parliament over trans rights 'retrograde'

Layla Moran (right) said Liz Truss has "betrayed" the trans community. (Getty)

Layla Moran MP has demanded that Tory equalities chief Liz Truss come before parliament to explain her “retrograde” policy on trans rights.

It was reported by the Sunday Times yesterday that Boris Johnson’s government is planning to scrap proposed reforms to the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) and will instead introduce “new protections” that will ban trans women from women’s spaces.

It is not the first time that newspapers have reported ministers “scrapping” plans to reform the GRA, which were first proposed by then-prime minister Theresa May in 2017 and subjected to a huge public consultation in 2018.

But it’s the first time that trans women’s existing right to use women’s bathrooms, changing rooms and other public single-sex spaces has been threatened.

Layla Moran, who is the Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, said that that Truss must face proper scrutiny for the rollback on trans rights.

“Trans rights are human rights. Trans women are women. Trans men are men. End of,” said Moran, who came out as parliament’s first openly pansexual MP at the start of this year.

‪”The trans community face untold discrimination and harassment. I and the Liberal Democrats stand in solidarity with them and tirelessly campaign for equal rights for all.‬

“‪Shelving these reforms means their suffering continues. Rather than pushing this retrograde policy through a series of leaks, something that has been done for the last year, Liz Truss should come to the House of Commons, explain her policy and let it be scrutinised properly.

“The government is about to betray a group to people they promised to help and support without justification.”

More than 100,000 people responded to the government’s public consultation on proposed reforms to the GRA in 2018 – which included making the process by which trans people update the gender marker on their birth certificate simpler and less intrusive.

Trans people have used the GRA to update the gender marker on their birth certificate since 2004, but only around 5,000 people have done so.

This low number – there are estimated to be around half a million trans people in the UK – is partly why the Conservatives decided to reform the GRA, so that more trans people would use it.

The consultation also polled people on whether non-binary people should gain legal gender recognition, whether the age at which trans people can change their legal gender should be lowered from 18 to 16, and whether the requirement that trans people live in their “acquired gender” for a set period of time before being allowed to change their legal gender should be reduced.

According to the Sunday Times, more than 70 per cent of respondents to the consultation agreed that the requirement for trans people to provide medical evidence of gender dysphoria before being allowed to change the gender marker on their birth certificate be removed.

However, the government has allegedly decided to ignore this because it believes the results were “skewed” by trans people taking part in the consultation about their rights.

More: Boris Johnson, gender recognition act, GRA Reform, Layla Moran, liz truss, single-sex spaces

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