Holyrood veterans fear ‘sex swap’ Bill risks licensing abuse of women

Predatory men could exploit provisions under the gender self-ID Bill in Scotland to abuse women, two veteran Scottish parliamentarians have warned.

Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Johann Lamont, an MSP for over 20 years, said the Bill sacrificed women’s safety “at the altar of gender ideology”.

Lord McConnell of Glenscorrodale, First Minister of Scotland between 2001 and 2007, told The Times the reforms raised “serious concerns” about safe spaces for women.


Lamont, an MSP from 1999 to 2021, described the Scottish Government’s Gender Recognition Reform Bill as “one of the most dangerous and misguided Bills in Holyrood’s history”.

She said that the recent Court of Session ruling, permitting men with a Gender Recognition Certificate to serve as ‘women’ on company boards, created a “powerful new weapon which predatory men could exploit to harm women and girls”.

“The so-called ‘safeguards’ being proposed”, she argued, “are utterly risible” and “could not conceivably work”.

Utterly risible safeguards

Male abusers, she argues, would be prepared to lie “to access vulnerable women”, despite the threat of up to two years’ imprisonment for a fraudulent application.


Lamont reflected: “I thought the mantra ‘a trans woman is a woman’ was about being kind. Of course, men who wished to live their lives as women were to be treated with dignity and respect.

“Then, without anyone really noticing, the narrative changed. Trans women were literally women. Men had become the opposite sex.”

She concluded: “the problem was that once you accept that literally ‘trans women are women’, you’ve conceded the logic of all these other arguments”.


Lord McConnell, referring to the same Court of Session ruling, said that it had changed the context to the Bill completely.

He explained that, in conjunction with the Bill in its current form, it would ‘incentivise’ “predatory male sex offenders to come to Scotland, identify as female, and have access to women’s hospital wards, rape crisis centres, and prisons”.

The Peer called on Holyrood to pause the Bill and enable “open debate that engages those with genuine worries, and makes appropriate changes to make sure women are safe in Scotland”.

Lord McConnell and Lamont both served tenures as Scottish Labour Party (SLP) leaders. Another former SLP leader, Kezia Dugdale, has backed the Bill.

Also see:


Two-thirds of Scots oppose Scot Govt’s gender self-ID Bill

Court of Session: ‘Men can take women’s positions on boards if they have a GRC’

Champions of gender self-ID bankrolled by Scot Govt

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