Under current laws, regulations, guidance and policies, all of the following are statements of fact:

FACT 1. Some male sex offenders are housed in women's prisons, in greater proportion than in the male prison population as a whole. Some have assaulted female prisoners.
FACT 2. A number of young people have completed medical pathways leading from gender dysphoria diagnosis to the surgical removal of healthy tissues, only to regret their transition later. Some of these people were gay or lesbian. Some were diagnosed in their adolescence.
FACT 3. In sport, separate sex classes exist for biological reasons. Some female athletes, at elite, junior and amateur levels, have lost opportunities to compete or progress after being beaten by male athletes. At least one has had her skull fractured in such a competition.
FACT 4. Some women escaping or recovering from sexual violence at the hands of men, including rape and sexual assault, have felt unable to access support services which are mixed sex. Public funding for such services has been tied to requirements for such sex inclusive policies.
FACT 5. Some women placed on single sex hospital wards have complained of exhibitionism by male patients placed on the same ward. In some such wards, including mental health wards, sexual assaults have occured.
FACT 6. Sexual assault and sexual harrassment is more common in mixed sex or unisex changing facilities than it is in single sex changing facilities.
None of these facts are in dispute.

They are well documented, convincingly evidenced and widely reported.

I could go on, with other instances or far bolder claims but these facts above are the basis for common ground.
Common ground as long as we don't immediately descend into obfuscatory and pedantic linguistic flailing.

When I say 'male' 'female' or 'sex' I mean the signified sex, which - in humans - is both immutable and binary, defined by gamete types.

Gender is something else.
All these alarming facts predate changes proposed for the reform of the Gender Recognition Act, which include gender self identification and the removal of associated single sex service exemptions in the Equality Act.

These proposals are commitments made, but not implemented.
Many people are concerned that the commitments, as proposed, would worsen the sort of factual observations set out in this thread.

Those people are not all bigots, or anti trans. They want an open discussion, evidenced based policies and fact based laws.
They want everyone's privacy, dignity and safety to be upheld, and for these interests to be weighed equally.

We don't want laws to enable greater harm.

What is the motivation of those who refuse any discussion, who suppress debate? I know it's not 'good law', that's for sure.
Lots of people are ascribing motivations to those who have brought all this about. Some are more plausible than others.

I believe different people have different motivations and the most common is for trans people to live their lives free from harrassment and discrimination.
I share that but with the addendum that our legal framework needs also to make these facts as untrue in the future as they are true in the present: no risk to women in prisons; no medical harm to young lesbians; women only sports; women only services; safe public spaces.
How we get there, what we put in place, is the debate to be had.

The proposals for change don't do any of that.

On the contrary, so they have alarmed many, especially including all those who believe our sex to both matter and for it to be immutable, as a matter of fact.

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More from @Lachlan_Edi

15 Sep
1. Sex is observable.
2. Gender ID is not observable.
3. Personal identities are constructed from a blend of environmental and innate factors.
4. The relative weight of these factors is under investigation and likely to vary between individuals but it remains unknown for now.
5. Unless statements 1-4 are disproven, the reorganisation of social categories, public policy or physical spaces on the basis of a declared gender identity is an ideological aim, driven not by an evidence base or objective science but by a belief, by articles of faith.
If you want to live in a society that is comparable to a theocracy that is your right as it is is mine to oppose you, without resorting to hate.

Just don't tell me you are motivated by a respect for human rights eh?
Read 8 tweets
14 Sep
35 years ago, I lay in bed as my co-occupant waking before me, looked at the map of the world I had pinned to the wall.

"So that's where India is", he said, eye drawn to the subcontinent.

We played a game.
Where's this 👇?

This 👉?
No, that's Japan. China is this big one 👈
Oh, yeah. Wow, China's big! So where's Korea then?
👈 Here.
OK, you must know this one👉

Of course, that's us. Britain.

Phew! And this one☝️?

Long pause.
Is that the Shetland Islands?
No! No, it's not Shetland.
It's Iceland.

Oh! So where's Greenland?
This is Greenland, here 👉
Read 4 tweets
12 Sep
It is perfectly possible for LTA to improve the inclusivity of trans people in British tennis without dismantling women's category.

Mixed sex training is perfectly common in tennis. Emma Radacanu has trained this year with Andy Murray, and played mixed doubles against him, too.
That bit is not the issue.

When it comes to competitions LTA offers age, county and sex restrictions but not grade restrictions. In other words, if I enter my local tournament and Andy Murray decides he needs a bit more match practise, he could be my first round opponent.
The adult tournaments are graded and usually that reflects the standard of entry but there's nothing to stop top players from entering low level tournaments.
Read 12 tweets
12 Sep
Emma Radacanu may be born in Canada to Chinese mother and Romanian father but she is the product of LTA system.

Actually, she is the first real success of our system since Tim Henman but that's another story. This one is about saving women's sport.
The LTA system identifies young girl's at an early age, as they spotted Emma when she played at clubs in Bromley.

Their elite development programme is very limited in number, separated into girls and boys, with the same number of places for each.

The numbers reduce with years.
I don't recall all the detail: a few years ago I set it all out and it took five sides of A4. And, like a good boy, I left my notes with the Labour Party. But let's say there's 100 on the radar at age 12, just 14 by the time they are all age 16.
Read 15 tweets
11 Sep
No one joins the Labour Party because they agree with every policy position or front bench pronouncement.

I'm a member because the political representation of organised labour is still the way to bring social progress through law.
In safe Tory seats, where Labour cannot win, you may have the luxury of shaping a broader agenda: a Green vote here, a Plaid vote there, a Scottish Socialist vote way back when*

FPTP = if Labour has a chance, any other vote is a vote for the status quo, a conservative vote.
That being the case, if you don't like our dots or commas, you should join us and argue for change. Or join a union and argue for change there.

It's a frustrating place to be, I know. You may not win. Yet.

But they don't call it 'the struggle' without reason.
Read 4 tweets
10 Sep
When Labour Party members refer to other Labour Party members as 'transphobes' or 'Terfs' for believing in the immutability of sex, with all that follows including consequences in law for the protected category of 'sex', they are resorting to prejudicial stereotypes.
That's against the party's rules, which are designed to ensure robust, spirited political debate can be held without resorting to the bullying or harrassment of those with different views.

Of course there are some people who fear, hate or would discriminate against trans people.
But not most of the people to whom these prejudicial stereotypes are directed.

Some, many, perhaps most oppose some of the proposed reforms of the Gender Recognotion Act and the Equality Act.

That's not the same thing as transphobia. It is allowed.

Moreover, ot is protected.
Read 10 tweets

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