UK

Tories swiftly condemned for hosting anti-trans pressure group LGB Alliance at party conference

Lily Wakefield September 30, 2021
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Boris Johnson: Tories condemned for hosting anti-trans LGB Alliance at party conference

Boris Johnson. (Getty/ Indigo/ Max Mumby)

The Conservatives are set to host the anti-trans group LGB Alliance, as well as a long list of anti-trans campaigners, at their annual party conference.

The Conservative Party Conference will take place from 3 to 6 October in Manchester and, according to ITV News, LGB Alliance has paid to have a stand in the exhibition hall where charities and business can promote themselves and lobby politicians.

To the dismay of the LGBT+ community, LGB Alliance was awarded charity status earlier this year. When applying for charity status, the group said its aims were to protect the human rights of LGB people. However, in a March 2020 speech, LGB Alliance director Bev Jackson said: “We’re applying for charitable status and building an organisation to challenge the dominance of those who promote the damaging theory of gender identity.”

The LGB Alliance denies that it is a transphobic group, but has on multiple occasions been described as a “hate group” since its October 2019 launch.

While most people slammed the Tories’ decision to platform “poisonous, divisive nonsense”, some Conservative MPs rushed to back LGB Alliance.

One of their supporters was Mansfield MP Ben Bradley, who last year proudly refused to take part in unconscious bias training to tackle sexism, racism and homophobia, described sexual harassment training as “a total waste of all of our time”, and called for greater government protection of straight men.

He wrote on Twitter: “Unlike Labour we’re actually open to a discussion on women’s rights, to listening to different views and trying to strike a fair and proper balance in this debate.”

Dudley North MP Marco Longhi shared his comments, simply writing: “This.”

Kate Harris, LGB Alliance co-founder, told ITV News that the organisation had received a “warm welcome” from the Tories, and was looking forward to “publicising its cause”. She also said that politicians that stood up for trans rights were “contorting themselves into ridiculous positions to defend idiotic ideas”.

But London Assembly member and LGBT+ Conservatives patron Andrew Boff told PinkNews: “Allowing the LGB Alliance into the conference is an enormous mistake and I want the party to remove their permission to exhibit.

“Hatred of a vulnerable minority is at the very core of that organisation’s existence and their attendance has the potential to create an unsafe environment for our trans members.

“LGBT+ Conservatives will continue to stand up for trans people and their rights.”

The former head of women for the LGBT+ Conservatives, Jessica Zbinden-Webster, added to ITV News: “It is disappointing to learn that the LGB Alliance has been offered a prominent stand at the 2021 Conservative Party Conference.

“In my view – a view many other cisgender women share – there is no LGB without the T.

“LGBT+ Conservatives stands in solidarity with trans women and men, as well as our non-binary community.

“It is of the utmost importance that members feel safe, whatever their gender presentation.”

The LGB Alliance are not the only anti-trans campaigners that will be appearing at the Conservative Party Conference

Other anti-trans campaigners will also be joining the LGB Alliance at the Conservative Party Conference, leading some to describe the event as a “TERF-fest”.

One of the conference’s “fringe events” will be a series of talks organised by Children and Women First, a group created by Baronness Emma Nicholson.

The events will include a reading by Helen Joyce from her book Trans: When Ideology Meets Reality, in which Joyce, a cis woman, argues that trans people fighting for rights and equality are like a “new state religion” with “blasphemy laws”.

The reading will be followed by a question and answer session with talkRADIO presenter Julia Hartley-Brewer, who has openly voiced her anti-trans views on several occasions, even inviting the notorious Posie Parker onto her show.

There will also be a panel discussion on “women’s sex-based rights”, hosted by Baroness Nicholson, and involving various other anti-trans campaigners from groups like Keep Prisons Single Sex, which campaigns against trans women being housed in the appropriate prisons, and Fair Play for Women, which works to stop trans women competing in sports.

Related topics: Ben Bradley, conservative party conference, lgb alliance, lgbt conservatives, tories, transphobia

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