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Labour’s LGBT+ advisor calls for UK-wide ‘safe spaces’ for transgender people

Anthony Watson is urging Government to legislate for ‘trans zones’ to be created in major towns and cities to help protect minority group against alarming rise in hate crime

The Labour Party’s diversity and equality advisor and British entrepreneur, Anthony Watson, is calling on the Government to designate ‘safe spaces’ across the UK for transgender people in a bid to protect them from the worrying rise in hate crime.

Mr Watson wants Ministers to give Local Authorities the powers to outline special zones for transgender people so they can socialise safely with family, friends and the wider LGBT+ community.

The equality tsar’s demands comes as a recent report by Stonewall – Britain’s leading LGBT charity – found that two in five trans people (41 per cent) have experienced a hate crime or incident because of their gender identity in the last 12 months. It also states that three in ten non-binary people (31 per cent) have experienced a hate crime or incident because of their gender identity, with younger trans adults at the greatest risk: 53 per cent of trans people aged 18 to 24 have experienced a hate crime or incident based on their gender identity over the last year.

Mr Watson, a tech entrepreneur who chairs Dawn Butler MP’s diversity and equalities board, says safe spaces – or trans zones – will give the minority group confidence to be themselves without the fear of being verbally abused or physically attacked.

The Labour advisor believes the Brexit vote, which has sown division and discourse within society, has meant trans people have increasingly been subject to hate crime.

Anthony Watson said:

“The decision to leave the European Union has ripped open deep dividing lines within the UK, creating a culture in which some people think targeting trans people is acceptable.

“The hate crime statistics prove that minority groups within society are prone to attack from fellow citizens, and thousands of cases go unreported every year. But one hate crime incident is one too many. It doesn’t have to be this way.

“That’s why I’m urging the Government to devolve powers to Mayors and Local Authorities across Britain so they can designate safe spaces for trans people. It could be part of a long-term solution in making them feel comfortable within their communities while promoting social cohesion.”

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7 thoughts on “Labour’s LGBT+ advisor calls for UK-wide ‘safe spaces’ for transgender people

  1. The point is that Transgender people feel threatened and ARE threatened daily going about their normal lives and suggesting that they have to ‘hide’ in a ‘safe ‘ area is NOT the point!!!
    Where do these so called ‘experts ‘ come from?
    Education Education Education!!

    Education for people in authority police NHS AND on consultation boards Training for people in retail government services GP receptionists the list goes on all the people we all meet face to face every day !! etc etc
    I suggest you get out in the community and see the ongoing slights the anger the aggression the assaults that trans people face daily even at their own front doors ( delivery persons post men etc etc !!!)

    Can we have someone on this consultation panel that has some knowledge and experience of the traumas that trans people face daily?

    Trans people are NOT lepers who have to be assigned an island or ghetto they are people trying to live a normal life free from prejudice shame aggression and violence

    Perhaps Mr ?????

  2. The idea is not new and has been used many times – “create a separate space for the persecuted minority and present it as being ‘for their protection'” – anyone with even a bit of historical knowledge will recognise it…

    * Apartheid & “Native Homelands”
    * “traditional” Jewish Ghettos
    * the system of segregation used in the American Deep South
    * allocated “women’s provision” in public facilities (restaurants, rail carriages, etc) in certain hyper-traditional societies
    * North American “Indian Reservations”

    Those have been really successful “protection”, haven’t they? Well no … NOT! In fact, ghettoised “protection” systems invariably end up creating a situation where persecutors feel MORE empowered to abuse the minority whenever they are “not where they belong”. The so-called “protection” actually creates and reinforces a system of persecution. And obviously makes it extremely difficult for “one of them” to get a job or a home outside the designated “safe zone”.

    Segregation and ghettoisation never work. EVERYWHERE needs to be a safe space.

    The only question that remains is whether the person who “recommends” this formalised ghettoisation of transgender people is a raving bigot or a naive idiot.

    1. Thanks Tina You put it all much more eloquently than me An excellent and thoughtful reply. I appreciate that other people feel the same way

  3. Safe spaces??? I don’t think so. Separate exclusion zones! Soon extended to all of us, ‘just to keep us safe’ yeah sure!

  4. but a hate crime seems to be referring to someones biological sex or saying something a trans person doesn’t agree with. Women are abused and attacked every day yet we are losing the very few sex based rights and protections we have, because violence against us, and I mean actual violence, isn’t recorded as a hate crime. However liking a limeric on twitter or saying that women don’t have penises is recorded as a hate crime. Trans people in the UK are very, very safe. Safer than young women, safer than a kid who is black. We need to look at what these hate crimes actually are. People should wear what they like and love who they please, no one gives a monkies. People do care when men state that they actually are the same as women and are entitled to the very few sex based rights and protections that women have.

    1. Trans women are women.

      Many trans women are not safe.

      Many trans women experience misogyny AND transphobia.

      The majority of trans women are law abiding, safe citizens, like anyone else.

      There are tens of thousands of registered cis female sex offenders, some of them against women or children just in the UK. Maybe spend some time thinking of ways to exclude those women from spaces you want to keep safe, and less time vilifying trans women as a group.

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