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Others

I feel that choice and freedoms of women are under attack from all quarters

I care because laws that rely on men choosing to do the right thing rather than those which attach a penalty for doing the wrong thing do not make me feel safe. Even the latter has not kept me safe from men who have stalked me and attempted to assault me sexually.

I feel that choice and freedoms of women are under attack from all quarters at present. This is the most insidious.

I have engaged in social media debate, written an occasional blog post about the issue, engaged in discussion with those close to me.

I have been harassed on social media.

Emily

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Healthcare

It’s a small life, I can’t trust all that easily and the wounds I carry bleed from time to time, but it’s a life and I owe that to the women that looked after me as soon as I left the airport.

I care about this issue because at the age of 14 I was raped to try and correct my homosexuality. I came to the UK as soon as I could at the age of 18 to seek asylum due to the harassment I received in my home country following the very public trial.

The people that raped me knew what a woman was, if I’d have been a gay man they would have hit and physically assaulted me and not raped me. It is important that we acknowledge and deal with the issues at the heart of violence against women in the UK as well as internationally.

If women coming to this country to seek asylum for MVAW (male violence against women) cannot tell their stories and get meaningful help because their language is now hate speech or exclusionary then how much of a safe refuge is this country?

I was broken when I came here in 2001, I’d experienced an unwanted pregnancy due to the rape and tried to abort at home due to abortion being illegal in my home country. It didn’t work and I was forced to carry my trauma with me for 9 months only to give birth to a child that only survived for 76hrs due to damage caused to his brain by my attempts to terminate. I have to live with this. A lot of women have to live with these kinds of wounds.

We need a place and a language to talk about our issues and to heal. To find support that demands nothing from us, not validation, not that we change our language, nothing.

I managed to get the help I needed and have managed to carve out a life here. It’s a small life, I can’t trust all that easily and the wounds I carry bleed from time to time, but it’s a life and I owe that to the women that looked after me as soon as I left the airport. The female doctors and nurses I was able to ask for, the female therapist who was with me for 15 years and delayed her retirement to help me stand on my own. The lecturers at my university who guided me and helped me gain a degree and become financially independent of the state. The lesbian community that helped me accept myself. They became my tribe, I am thankful.

I have written to my MP, I have been to his surgery to speak to him. He seems sympathetic, he’s from a Religious minority group himself and seems sympathetic but I’m not sure he has really done much about this as his party is firmly pro trans.

I have joined online forums and signed petitions and donated where I could. All the people I speak to seem to be very sympathetic and understand the insanity of where women find ourselves but many fear speaking publicly as do I.

I’ve lost friends. I work in an NHS mental heath setting and most of the people I work with understand the insanity of the current trans movement but this is whispered in dark corners and can never be said openly.

Everyone is scared, I had a colleague say to me a while back that we, as mental heath services, are going to pay dearly for this in a few years time but we daren’t go against the Stonewall lobby that is everywhere in our Trust.

As a mother, grandmother, feminist, educationalist, woman, this matters to me for a number of reasons. As a survivor of domestic abuse, I know how vital to me were women only spaces. I would not have been able to get the support I needed if I had not been confident that specific spaces were open only to women. The fear of such spaces being available to male-bodied people, however they identify, is very real and, I believe, would prevent women from accessing safety, support and much needed resources.

Sex is real. Women are women. Women’s oppression is based on sex. Women’s hard-won rights are in real danger of being eroded. Trans people have rights and, obviously, shoukd do. These are safeguarded in law. As are sex-based rights. The two are separate. One set of rights should not, and need not, trump another. Women are women, transwomen are transwomen and both should be safeguarded.

I am deeply concerned at what is being promulgated in schools and what children and young people are being told online. Feminism has fought for years to break down gender stereotypes. Our nonconforming children should be allowed/encouraged to be just that. Dress wearing boys and tomboy girls should not be told they are in the wrong body.

It’s clear that many young people, disproportionately girls, disproportionately those with conditions like autism, are being put on a path to medicalised transition too early, too quickly and often inappropriately. There is insufficient research into the impact of puberty blockers and what evidence there is suggests not the ‘pause’ as is often cited but the first step in an increasingly inevitable pathway.

Women are being silenced. We are afraid to speak for fear of casually being labelled and abused as transphobic. We are not. Generally, we are progressive women with histories of fighting for human rights and many causes. We haven’t suddenly become bigots. We are not transphobic. We ARE supporters of women’s rights.

I’ve made social media posts, attended consultation at House of Lords and submitted evidence to the Gender Recognition Act consultation.

P, Women matter

Categories
Healthcare

Difference is what makes us human and should be celebrated

This is crucially important as the only thing that makes us male or female is our bodies and there is no such think as being born in the wrong body.  Difference is what makes us human and should be celebrated, not forced in to limiting social constructs that oppress us all and reinforce stereotypes. 

Bodies matter in other ways too and male bodies are much stronger, faster and more powerful so should not be allowed to enter women’s sports.  Only men rape, so they should not be allowed access to our sex-segregated spaces.  Safety, privacy and dignity are desperately important. 

I am also very concerned about the meaning of language and that words that are very specific can be changed as casually as the definition of the word Woman, now changed in law by the Scottish Government.

I have attended rallies (threatened by trans activists beforehand, who also told the organisers that we were intending to rush the stage and be violent – a complete fabrication).

I help to organise local meetings that are very peaceful but have been subjected to really vicious and threatening abuse by trans activists and even local politicians standing outside of the venues.

I work as hard as I can to raise awareness of the issues involved, handing out leaflets and standing up whenever I am able, to share details and correct misinformation.

I am in a number of groups that share links and other information, acting within a political party to support and protect women’s rights and fight against the erasure of the meaning of being a woman / female.

I have written to my MP and been ignored.

On a training course the transgender trainer was extremely unpleasant when I said that women and transwomen have different health care needs.  They made a complaint to my manager.

I was subjected to very intimidating abuse and threats at meeting venues, monitored by trans activists within my political party and my views closed down immediately when attempting to defend women’s rights.

On Twitter & Facebook I have been told to die in a fire and that I should be raped to death, subjected to outrageously offensive comments and aggression, and reporting these comments to the Twitter and Fb resulted in no action being taken by the perpetrators.

I have had my face filmed very closely by some abusive trans activists (some masked) who were attempting to intimidate me from attending a meeting.

J

Categories
Healthcare

There is no justification for using unlicensed medications on children outside of a clinical trial.

I care because I have great concerns about the influence of political ideology on the medical treatment of vulnerable children

I have posted on medical forums about the inadequate evidence for puberty blockers being used in gender dysphoria clinics. There is no justification for using unlicensed medications on children outside of a clinical trial.

This shouldn’t be news but critical appraisal of evidence seems to be a skill that’s no longer taught in medical school.

I was called racist, a bigot, uneducated, ‘old fashioned’ and various other personal insults by fellow doctors. My questioning about the reliability of Stonewall’s publications about suicidality drew comments that I was freakish and ‘messy’ for questioning a deeply flawed methodology. I was then banned from the group for ‘spreading hatred’

Dr S Smith , MBChB

Categories
Education

I no longer feel comfortable being a member of WEP

I care about this issue because I am concerned that women are losing long fought rights and the small advances achieved by the feminist movement are being threatened.

I have questioned the lack of consultation by The Women’s Equality Party on changes to gender equality law. My local group was not asked for a response

I no longer feel comfortable being a member of WEP

H, Life long feminist

Categories
Education Healthcare

A bullying group has turned truth into lies

Sex is real. sex defines humans and mammals. it is the way laws and protections are established and maintained in our society.

Seeing these meaningful definitions being eradicated by the Trans lobby, behaving like a dictatorship, is scary.

it’s threatens and undermines our protections and freedoms. Anyone who speaks out as “concerned“ is vilified as hateful, by a bullying group that has turned truths into lies, implying they are victims when they are actually the perpetrators.

There are many dangers, allowing such a lobby, that relies on lying about the most important aspect of our lives SEX, to attack women and gain access to us and our children.

I have been emailing organisations like safeguarding hub that criticises breast binding in Africa meanwhile lottery funding is given to breast binding businesses in the UK. I have written to M&S about changing rooms. I have written to Baroness Nicholson, Liz Truss, to members of the civil service about the LGBTQ champion who is head of the Department for Education, he also has a child who is “trans”, a huge conflict of interest.

I have questioned a Labour Councillor through labour complaints for her hate speech towards women on Twitter. Labour threatened me with further action if I discussed my complaint on social media, they deemed she was not guilty of inappropriate behaviour using swearing & slurs.

I’ve had my mental health questioned. I have been called a *unt by a labour man on social media. when I complained & resigned my labour membership I was reprimanded for using bad  language when relating the names I’d been called!

I advised a group of women who were “friends” & childminders, that drag queens in Brixton library was wrong for under 5’s, & that they need parental permission as it’s political, they verbally attacked me & I had to block them from my life. These are just a few instances. My anxiety has been bad due to my fears of retaliation. I have had to ensure my name can’t be traced to my home.

AM

Categories
Healthcare Parent

The boundaries which define my existence…are being erased in law

As a woman, a feminist and now as a mother this matters to me because the boundaries which define my existence as a female person are being erased in law.

Legally, politically and socially the definition of woman is being diluted to the point of nothingness for the benefit of males.

The sex-based protections offered to women through the 2010 Equalities Act become entirely meaningless and thus leave women and children at even greater risk from male violence.

Our rights, our safety, our privacy and even the language we use to speak of our lives, bodies, our uniquely female experiences and how we are oppressed globally under patriarchy is threatened by this unnecessary and highly misogynistic redefinition.

I have attended some feminist talks and meetings about this issue.I have donated money to feminist groups when possible. I try to have civil and straightforward conversations about these issues with the people in my life. I read widely and research as much as I can. I share and discuss content online in feminist groups and through an anonymous account.

I have gotten into emotionally charged debates with some people. My anonymous social media account has been featured in several “terf block and stay safe” lists circulated online. I have received some nasty, misogynistic comments.

Lisa W., Radfem mother

Categories
Parent

Women need their own words, spaces, rights to assemble

I care because I am a Woman. I care because I have a daughter. Women need their own words, spaces, rights to assemble. No other class of people would be told they must accept their oppressor into their own class of people. Moreover, my daughter is disabled and my responsibilities stretch beyond my own lifetime. I want to know her right to same-sex care will be protected. Her right to undress outwith the male gaze is maintained.

In a world in which Women are overly sexualised from an early age it is appalling that we would be asked to give up our privacy. Telling Women to embrace discomfort or that saying no is bigotry is coercive.

My Government has already redefined Woman in one Act- more will follow and in law Women will no longer be deemed to exist as a material reality. This terrifies me as if we do not exist as a material reality violence against Women disappears, sexism disappears, misogyny disappears. How often Women are told their concerns are ‘all in their head’ like their concerns are made up, imagined, but when something is in a man’s head it automatically becomes truth.

I have set up a social media account devoted to this subject in an attempt to get information to as many Women as possible since Governments are not informing Women of the changes that are being made. I attended a demonstration. I attend Women’s meeting. I leafleted re GRA reform. I have written to politicians.

I have been name-called on social media. Being called Terf is a regular occurrence. I have been added to ‘Nazi’ lists. I have received threatening memes. And sexual comments have been made to me. I have been called stupid, and told I need re educated as many times as I have been called Terf.

EH, worried, exhausted but still standing

Categories
Parent

We are no longer entitled to privacy, dignity or safety

I care because the sex based protections afforded to me and my daughter by law are being destroyed and that we are no longer entitled to privacy, dignity or safety.

It’s also a sexist stereotype to ” live as a woman”. I don’t wear makeup or dress in especially feminine clothing. Does that mean I am less of a woman even though I bore children?

I have written to my local theatre about them changing some of their female toilets to accept men without consulting their customers. They replied that it was down to their diversity committee and they would not reconsider.

I live in Scotland and got in touch with an educational provider of resources for schools in Scotland regarding relationships etc to enquire about a video they linked to on their website. It was very one-sided about a boy becoming transgender but disregarded how this impacted on girls. They replied that they decided to remove the video; not because of my reasoning but because they realised that the material contained sexist stereotypes that they were uncomfortable with.

I wrote to a castle in Aberdeenshire about their mixed sex toilets. On entering I assumed that they were self-contained and I think the large bearded tourist in front of me was as uncomfortable as I was. I wrote to the castle’s representative and asked why they had chosen to do this. The reply was that the men’s used to be separate but the building became unsafe and they had limited space and planning permission. When I wrote back to explain why mixed sex toilets we’re bad for women and girls ( I cited voyeurism and privacy) they ignored me.

I have written to some MPs and MSPS with mixed results and some patronising comments.

I have delivered some leaflets for For Women Scotland. I do not know if there was anything positive from this but I felt better at doing something albeit anonymously.

If I do anything, it’s usually as a private communication with a company or politician.

I don’t feel confident or comfortable doing it in a more public forum. I did it once on Facebook and received some negative feedback in the form of cartoons. I gleaned from one cartoon from someone who I regarded as a close childhood friend that I was “an asshole”.

Tombs of Atuan, Mother of school age children