Yesterday I tweeted something to @Jgicriminolg about Gender Self ID. Been amazed at the engagement so thought I would say a bit more. For a short while I was Probation Officer in a Multi Agency Public Protection team. I met a lot of sex offenders.
I came across sex offenders who converted to Islam or Christianity and tried to change names or exploit weaknesses in legislation. Who posed really significant risk to Women, Girls and Boys. I think I should talk about gender self ID, and why I have concerns
Some academics suggest there is little (if any) support for the idea that Trans protections facilitate cisgender preditory offenders who then feign a trans identity to perpatrate assaults in women only spaces. This is unbelievably naive. Staggeringly so.
The idea that sex offenders are manipulative individuals who would exploit systems and laws could only be unreal to those who do not know how manipulative sexual offenders can be. All groom, seek to exploit and control. It's different, They have different plays, but all do it.
I sat across from sex offender who swore to me he wasn't working, he left my office to attend a children's charity disco his was supposed to be DJ at. A child rapist, "It is my right to practice my Bhuddist faith, and I should be allowed to travel to Thailand". (Hmm, no)
Some.academics say concerns over "supposed" threat of trans identities reveal lingering anti-trans sentiment. Do they? No. I know Trans people face massive abuse, I see that too. Both can be true. Yet still I am not sold in any way that Gender Self ID is as simple as some suggest
Bad law happens, bad legislation without consideration does have risk, and in this instance of Gender Self ID to me, the concern is also understandable. Of course some views may come from predudice. But not all. In my view if those who support Gender Self ID want to see change...
then there is a need to address concerns head on, and not simply claim they are not real, not empirically grounded or merely anecdotal. To me the issue here is the danger that Trans identity is used as cover for harmful individuals. That is in no one's interest.
Least of all Trans people. No community is made stronger internally or externally by association, real or implied with the most selfish, narcassistic, harmful and individuals, many of whom get off on causing pain to others around them. Who wants those people in their group?
My experiences are limited, but I have met and dealt with a lot more nasty, violent and dangerous preditory male sexual offenders than most people have. That is the group driving my concern. What I know of them as a group, there is NO rule or opportunity they will not exploit.
It isn't about trans people, it's about bad people who will exploit the law from self interest and work within a legal framework (that could protect women's spaces) to do as they want and get what they want. You think that won't happen, you don't know how many sex offenders act.

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More from @James_Treadwell

19 Oct
Been listening to the Nolan podcast on Stonewall. One thing that strikes me is, how badly informed people are about the Equality Act (and guidance on it). It shouldn't have been possible for a lobby group to play so fast and loose, but they did so because of general ignorance.
In all then an important thing in the current debate is to look at the law and what it actually really says. An interesting thing in the debate, especially around Trans rights is one side is emotive, the other is framed around concern with legislation and how it really operates.
If I am forced to pick a side here, and the issue is more complex than black and white, for sure, I would go with that one that is at least is more trustworthy on how the real law, i.e. the Equality Act currently frames Gender Reassignment Discrimination, which it does.
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