Say No to Dangerous Gender Identity Bill

The State Should Not be Enforcing Gender Ideology on Our Nation


Say No to Dangerous Gender Identity Bill

11,586 people have signed. Help us reach 20,000 signatures.

Say No to Dangerous Gender Identity Bill

In December 2016, Maria Miller MP, Chair of the Women and Equalities Committee, presented the Gender Identity (Protected Characteristic) Bill 2016-2017, which seeks

“to make gender identity a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010 in place of gender reassignment and to make associated provision for transgender and other persons; and for connected purposes.”

The change was needed, we are told, because “current wording is outdated and confusing”. So it seems that the solution is to update the terms so that they are significantly more confusing.

Previously, the protected characteristic was “gender reassignment” which referred to someone having undergone some kind of physical change to "become" the opposite sex. The proposed change to “gender identity”, although minor on the face of it, is a profound and far reaching change.

According to the ideology being advanced here, “gender identity” is one’s subjective perception of their own gender as distinct from their objective sex.

Given the inherently subjective nature of “gender identity”, having it as a “protected characteristic is a very dangerous thing. This is primarily because determining someone’s “gender identity” at least as far as the law is concerned, seems to rely exclusively on their word. So when a man self identifies as a woman, it is his word that he is really a “she” that is the determining factor.

We should be concerned about this law for several reasons:

1. It is open to serious abuse. Of course there are some people who genuinely consider themselves to be the gender that they are not and such persons have the same dignity as everyone else and should be treated with the same respect. Yet there are some people who would seek to take advantage of this law.

For example, one can easily imagine a man who self identifies as a woman in order to gain access to a women’s changing facility at a public swimming pool. His gender identity would be a “protected characteristic” and it might be illegal for the pool to remove this man from the women's changing room.

Again, while there may be some who are genuinely confused about their gender and this law might in some way help, there will be people who abuse it, and it seems that there is no way for the law to account for this.

In this way then, it poses a serious danger for women and children

2. Whether or not there is nefarious intent, many people rightly do not think it appropriate for a member of the opposite sex (whatever their "gender identity") to enter a changing room not of their sex when it is in use. This is a serious violation of privacy.

3. It undermines the basic notion of equality before the law. Some people, because of a “protected characteristic” are given preferential treatment and therefore not treated equally by the law.

4. This legislation is enforcing a particular, extremely controversial, view of the nature of men and women on the whole of society. As the state does not enforce one particular religious or philosophical worldview, so it should not enforce one particular view about what it means to be a man or woman on the whole of society.

Please sign this petition to Maria Miller, asking her to reconsider this ill thought through legislation.

+ Letter to:

Sign this petition now!

Please enter your email
Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please enter your country
Please enter your postcode
Please select an option:

Regarding the Gender Identity (Protected Characteristic) Bill 2016-2017

Dear Ms Maria Miller,

I write to you in regard to the Gender Identity (Protected Characteristic) Bill 2016-2017.

I recognise that any unjust discrimination in regard to a person's “gender identity” is not only unacceptable but deeply saddening.

However, I am deeply concerned about the possible implications of this Bill.

Firstly, it seems to undermine equality before the law and gives those with “protected characteristics” – in this case, people’s “gender identity” – a special status and protection that the rest of us, who do not have a particular “protected characteristic” are not entitled to.

This is deeply opposed to fundamental notions of equality of the citizenry before the law.

Secondly, whilst I understand the rationale for changing “gender reassignment” to “gender identity”, this change moves from the objective realm, to the subjective realm. It moves from an outward state that can be easily verified, to an inward state impossible to verify beyond the words of the person who says them.

Of course, many if not most people who identify as this or that gender, are entirely sincere in this respect, but the law would be incredibly naïve to suppose that there are not duplicitous individuals who might want to take advantage of the law in order to attain some benefit.

For example, we can easily imagine a man identifying as a woman in order to gain access to women’s changing facilities at a public swimming pool.

Again, I do not wish to imply that most or many people will do this, but the law has to take into account that this is a very real possibility. Yet, because of the proposals in this Bill, it is unclear how it could be shown that a man who wants access to women’s changing facilities because he is a pervert, rather than because he truly identifies as a woman.

If a “he” can simply proclaim himself a “she”, how is the law to differentiate between those cases where this is meant sincerely and those cases where an individual is saying so for his/her own nefarious purposes? It is not unreasonable for a woman with a child not to want a man, who calls himself a woman, to be in the same changing area as her and her child. The proposed Bill however, appears to be entirely silent on this issue.

In the debate on this (01/12/2016) you said that “if criminal behaviour is taking place, it should be dealt with by the criminal law.” The problem, as has been indicated, is that this legislation means either that there is no crime – because the man who went into the women’s changing area was not a man but a woman – or that such a crime is impossible to detect – because all this person need do is identify as a woman and, as this gender identity is an entirely subjective characteristic, this person cannot be easily be shown to be any gender other than what he claims.

Of course, the gender identity of an individual is utterly irrelevant to their inherent dignity and such persons are deserving of respect. There is also a need however, for this legislation to take into account the way in which is can be abused, and so far, there is no indication that this has been done.

Thirdly, the very terms “gender identity” appear to belong to an ideology which is not widely accepted and which the state should not be forcing upon all its citizens. The state does not enforce, in law, one particular religion or world view over any others. But here, the state does appear to be enforcing one particular world view of what it means to be a man or a woman on all of society. This is not something the state should be doing.

I find it quite shocking that a Conservative MP would be promoting a piece of legislation which gives the state such far reaching powers into the lives and businesses of its citizens.

There are many people who do not consider it appropriate (to say the least) for someone who is biologically a man to enter a women's changing facility whilst in use, regardless of whether or not this person has nefarious intent. A potential consequence of this legislation would be to discriminate against all the women (and families) who do not want a member of the opposite sex in their changing facilities.

This is neither bigotry nor prejudice, and to ignore these concerns is a gross intrusion of the state into our private lives.

Therefore, I ask you

•to find an alternative approach to ensuring that those with non-traditional “gender identities” are not marginalised or are subject to any unjust form of discrimination;
•an approach which does not see the state enforcing a particular radical ideology;
•an approach which takes into account the fact that some people will seek to abuse this system, and because of it, be able to oppress others with impunity;
•an approach which does not force women (and families) to endure the presence of a member of the opposite sex in their changing rooms.

[Your Name]

Say No to Dangerous Gender Identity Bill

Sign this petition now!

11,586 people have signed. Help us reach 20,000 signatures.