Steph's Place

Is the EHRC colluding with trans hostile lobby groups? LGB Alliance's Submission to EHRC Board Briefing

Splitting the T from the LGBT

 

In early 2021, the Equality & Human Rights Commission (EHRC) asked 'Stakeholders' to provide video submissions for a Board Briefing on 'Transgender Issues' which was to be held on 9th Feb 2021.

One of those Stakeholders was Woman's Place UK as shown in the email to Kate Harris and Bev Jackson of LGB Alliance sent at 12:58 on the 8th of February 2021 - exactly one year ago today! 

The email reads (highlighting is ours). 

 

Dear Kate and Bev,

Apologies to email you out of the blue. I have a time limited request which I wondered if you could help with. Tomorrow we are holding a briefing session for our board on issues relating to trans people. We had asked three organisations with an interest in the debate on balancing trans peoples rights with other peoples rights to provide short (3 minutes) videos explaining their positions and policies. Unfortunately one of the organisations we asked (Women's Place UK) have been unable to provide a video at the last minute. I know you have recently been in touch with colleagues at the Commission and will soon be meeting with Melanie Field. She has asked me to contact you to enquire whether you would be able to provide a short three minute video outlining LGB Alliance's main policy positions and why you think it is important to separate trans and LGB issues for us the share with our board at tomorrows session. The video can be filmed on someone's phone, it doesn't need to be in any way finessed. 

 

Copied into the email was Melanie Field who is Executive Director Strategy, Policy, Legal and Wales

It is unclear who (other than Woman's Place UK) were originally asked to provide videos, though we understand Stonewall were one of those asked.

Reports from Vice News, would appear to suggest that no other significant "pro trans" groups were asked to provide a submission, and we can confirm that is our view as per our own Freedom of Information Act requests.

From the evidence supplied to us via our Freedom of Information requests it is apparent that Woman's Place UK asked that the EHRC to take note of their written submission in regards to GRA reform instead of producing a video. 

 

The email sent on the 8th of Feb 2021 raises a number of serious questions, which we feel should be answered by lawyers and the EHRC.

(1) Why were the EHRC suggesting any need to split the T from LGB? We know for a fact that this is an ambition of the international anti-trans movements (such as "Hands Across the Aisle) as we published in August of last year.   

(2) Public organisations are obliged by Public Service Equality Duty (PSED). In seeking videos from trans hostile groups specifically prompting for certain actions such as 'Seperating the T from the LGB' is the EHRC "fostering good relations" or "harmonising the equality duties to extend it across the protected characteristics"?

Heres what the EHRC's own website says about about PSED

The equality duty

The equality duty was developed in order to harmonise the equality duties and to extend it across the protected characteristics. It consists of a general equality duty, supported by specific duties which are imposed by secondary legislation.  In summary, those subject to the equality duty must, in the exercise of their functions, have due regard to the need to:

  • Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act.
  • Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
  • Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.

These are sometimes referred to as the three aims or arms of the general equality duty. The Act explains that having due regard for advancing equality involves:

  • Removing or minimising disadvantages suffered by people due to their protected characteristics.
  • Taking steps to meet the needs of people from protected groups where these are different from the needs of other people.
  • Encouraging people from protected groups to participate in public life or in other activities where their participation is disproportionately low.

 

 

(3) LGB Alliance is now a charity. Does their video suggest they are acting against a protected characteristic or group - and if so does that question their charity status? 

(4) Did the EHRC, directly and/or indirectly discriminate against transgender people in breach of EA2010 in general? 

(5) Is 'Seperating Trans and LGB' part of the 'Overall Strategy' relating to transgender issues that Alasdair Henderson referenced in his email of 11 Sept 2020 pushing for intervention in the Forstater vs CGD case?

(6) Given that the board and the EHRC, in general, would appear to be colluding with trans hostile groups (some would call them "stakeholders") - why is this involvement with these lobby groups not recorded as a clear conflict of interest in their Register of Interests, which clearly asks for such?

 

And interestingly, documents in our possession suggest that the EHRC agreed to allow WPUK a further opportunity to present information to the Board at a later date, so it could well be the case that they got two bites of the EHRC's apple. As did LGB Alliance, who later had a further, individual meeting with the EHRC on the 24th February 2021.

 

We also note that many so called 'gender critical' activists have been claiming across social media that the statement's made by Ben Hunte in his Vice News articles last week has been 'made up'. This is untrue. 

During the Steph's Place investigation we did obtain the video of LGB Alliance's submitted to the EHRC for their biased Board Briefing on "Transgender Issues".

Content Warning:

The link to the video can be found below, however, we must warn you that the contents are in our opinion deeply prejudiced and discriminatory, as well as factually incorrect about transgender people, lives and healthcare - often to the point some may argue of paranoid obsession and hysterical conspiracy theory.

 

Link : LGB Alliance Video

If you can't stomach watching that, a transcript of the submission can be found here.

 

Copies of the communications asking for the submissions from trans hostile groups can be found in documents FOIReq5 - LGBA’ and ‘FOIReq9 - WPUK

 

Authored by Claire & Steph 06:48 8th February 2021


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