Stonewall accused of attempting to silence barrister who defends biological sex

A barrister is suing Stonewall and her legal chambers, arguing that the charity applied pressure on them to have her investigated for affirming men cannot become women.

Allison Bailey, who helped to found the LGB Alliance, says she was silenced “because both my chambers and Stonewall treat people such as me, who hold gender critical beliefs, as being bigoted and unworthy of respect”.

Her case comes as tax consultant Maya Forstater’s claim that ‘gender critical’ beliefs are protected by equality law was upheld by an Employment Appeal Tribunal.


Bailey released an email from Stonewall to Garden Court Chambers, in which the charity warns that the Chambers’ association with the barrister “puts us in a difficult position with yourselves”.

The email accuses Bailey of “calling our work on LGBT equality ‘gender extremism’” and “accusing Stonewall of ‘appalling levels of intimidation, fear and coercion’”. It also linked to several tweets the lawyer had ‘liked’ and ‘retweeted’ affirming biological sex.

The email said: “These actions and their link to Garden Court Chambers, threatens the positive relationship yourselves have built with the trans community”.

Under pressure

Stonewall’s legal bid to strike out Bailey’s case was rejected in February by Judge Holly Stout.

The judge said the bid “plainly seeks to put pressure on Chambers to take action against the Claimant”.

plainly seeks to put pressure on Chambers to take action against the Claimant

She added that Stonewall was “urging Chambers to remove the Claimant from Chambers”, accompanying this with a threat about their relationship going forward.

Maya Forstater

Last week, Maya Forstater, who lost her job for defending the reality of biological sex, won her appeal.

The former tax consultant lost her job in 2019 after tweeting that biology determines whether people are male or female. An employment tribunal had ruled she had not been treated unlawfully, as ‘gender critical’ beliefs were not protected by equality law.

But Mr Justice Choudhury has now declared that the tribunal was in error and that Forstater’s beliefs are protected under the Equality Act 2010.

After her successful case, Forstater said: “I am delighted to have been vindicated. I lost my job simply for expressing a view that is true and important, and held by the great majority of people in this country: sex matters.”

Also see:

Lawyer: ‘Stonewall misleading universities over equality law’

‘Flood’ of public bodies exit Stonewall scheme

Stonewall guide ‘misleads and intimidates’ schools over ‘inclusive’ Ofsted checks

Women’s rights campaigners tell EHRC: ‘Remove Stonewall muzzle’

Stonewall: Ditch ‘mum’ for ‘parent who has given birth’