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British Army, Marie Curie and Disney among 132 major organisations uniting to remind Boris Johnson that trans rights are human rights

Vic Parsons September 14, 2020
Businesses urge Boris Johnson to reform Gender Recognition Act

Boris Johnson has been told by businesses to respect the results of the public consultation on Gender Recognition Act reform. (Stefan Rousseau- WPA Pool/Getty Images)

A huge coalition of 132 major British organisations – including the British Army, Marie Curie and Disney – has publicly declared that trans rights are human rights, with 70 urging Boris Johnson to reform the Gender Recognition Act.

The companies and groups who have come together to highlight their support for trans colleagues, employees and customers include universities, tech companies, leading charities and media giants like Sony, the Financial Times and Warner Bros.

This show of solidarity for trans equality will come as a boost for the trans community ahead of an anticipated government announcement on plans to reform the Gender Recognition Act, the 2004 law that adult trans men and women use to gain legal recognition of their gender, which Johnson’s equalities chief Liz Truss promised would be made “over the summer”.

Aviva, BP, CITI, Expedia, Microsoft and Sky are among the UK companies to publicly declare their support for trans rights today, in a coalition that was announced by LGBT+ charity Stonewall.

Stonewall’s new chief executive Nancy Kelley said: “We’re proud of all the business leaders who today are ‘coming out’ for trans equality. All these companies are sending a powerful message to trans communities that leading businesses have their backs.

“At a time when trans rights feel increasingly under threat, the diversity of all these businesses taking part today shows there is a wealth of support for trans people at the most senior levels of British industrial and cultural life.

“But we can’t be complacent. If we want to live in a world where every trans person can be themselves, each of us must use our voice to challenge transphobia and take action to create more inclusive communities.”

Businesses urge Boris Johnson to honour results of Gender Recognition Act consultation.

Seventy companies also signed an open letter to Boris Johnson urging him to honour the Tories’ commitment to protecting trans people’s rights and reforming the Gender Recognition Act.

It follows a similar July letter from businesses including Google and Sky, and reminds Johnson that they “believe that a diverse workforce, including trans employees, offers greater business success”.

“With this in mind, we would be opposed to any policy or legislation changes that impact the trans community negatively,” says the letter, which was sent to Boris Johnson this morning.

It continues: “It has been widely reported that the 2018 public consultation on GRA reform shows up to 70 per cent of respondents agreed that it was appropriate to remove additional barriers to trans people being able to identify and live authentically. 

“Failing to honour the government’s commitment to implement the consultation findings, and even increasing restrictions on trans people’s ability to live authentically, benefits no one.

“It would mean changes to working environments that would make it hard for trans and non-binary people to focus on their work, preventing them from being able to travel safely, and inhibiting them from operating in society.”

More: Boris Johnson, british army, Disney, gender recognition act, GRA Reform, liz truss, Marie Curie

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