Trans YouTuber Abigail Thorn considering leaving the UK because she ‘can’t get proper healthcare or equal rights’
Trans YouTube star Abigail Thorn is considering leaving the UK for New York because she “can’t get proper healthcare or equal rights” at home.
The Philosophy Tube host, who came out as trans in January, revealed that she is thinking of leaving England because of the hostile environment for trans people.
Writing on Twitter, Thorn said she is “really torn” over whether she should stay in the UK or move to New York City.
“I do love my country – it’s beautiful, the people are interesting, and it’s my home – but Jesus, if I can’t get proper healthcare or equal rights then, England, it feels like you don’t love me back,” Thorn wrote.
“The US isn’t perfect and in many areas is worse, but there are pockets of it where I could live more freely than in Britain – that’s how obstinately bad things are here.”
Thorn said the next two years will prove “crucial” in her decision to stay or leave, adding: “I want to stay but something has to change.”
The YouTuber later responded to people pointing out that New York is expensive to live in and has no free healthcare.
“London is also expensive, and if you are trans it also de facto has no free transition healthcare cause the waiting list is decades long AND it doesn’t cover basic needs you can get elsewhere,” she wrote.
Abigail Thorn admitted she was ‘scared’ when she came out as trans
The UK was once seen as one of the most progressive countries in the world on trans rights when it introduced the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) in 2004, allowing trans people to be legally recognised in their correct gender for the first time.
However, in recent years, the UK has become embroiled in a “culture war” surrounding trans rights, with anti-trans commentators and lobby groups pushing for hard-won rights and freedoms to be curtailed.
In recent years, the UK government has backed away from plans to introduce self-identification, which would remove much of the bureaucratic burden on trans people.
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The situation is even worse for trans people seeking vital healthcare. The waiting list for London’s NHS gender clinic is now estimated to be 26-years long, meaning countless trans people are being pushed to pay for private treatment instead.
Abigail Thorn addressed the discrimination faced by trans people every day in the UK when she came out in January.
“Trans people, especially trans people of colour, are hit hardest by unemployment, homelessness, and domestic, sexual, and police violence, but the conversation always focuses on wealthy white cis women tweeting about toilets,” Thorn said.
She said it was “so lovely” to be able to relax and “be at home” in herself after coming out – but she also admitted that she was “scared”.
“Things are very, very bad for trans people in the UK and they’re getting worse.
“My existing following means I have now instantly become one of the most recognisable transgender people in the country and I feel an enormous pressure to be ‘good at it’ like if I could only be clever enough, or pretty or funny or articulate enough, things would magically come right!” she said.