Campaigners who reject transgender ideology have called on the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to end its support of LGBT lobby group Stonewall.
In an open letter to the EHRC, a coalition of like-minded groups and individuals have questioned whether the equality watchdog is able to fulfil its “mandate” whilst championing Stonewall’s controversial ‘diversity scheme’.
The letter is being co-ordinated by Maya Forstater, who lost her job after saying that men cannot become women. At her recent employment tribunal appeal, the EHRC stated that ‘gender critical’ beliefs were protected under the Equality Act.
In the letter, campaigners accuse Stonewall of arguing that “everyone must accept that ‘Trans women are women, trans men are men and non-binary people are non-binary’, or lose the security of their employment”.
we fear that the watchdog has muzzled itself
But, it continues: “This workplace thought-policing is in conflict with the interpretation of the law that the EHRC put forward in the Forstater case.”
According to the letter: “The EHRC’s job should be to ensure organisations comply with the Equality Act. Instead, in signing up to the Stonewall Diversity Champion Scheme, we fear that the watchdog has muzzled itself.”
The signatories call on the watchdog to end its “inappropriate relationship of obedience and submission” with Stonewall and conduct a review into the lobby group’s wide-reaching influence in public life.
A shorter version of the letter appeared in The Sunday Times newspaper.
Whilst welcoming the contribution of the EHRC in the Forstater discrimination case, it pointed out that the watchdog had been “late to make its voice heard”.
It added: “Many people (mainly women) have faced similar treatment to Maya Forstater. We have heard of disciplinary action for saying JK Rowling is not transphobic, for asking a question during equality training, for saying that men are not lesbians or for asking for female-only lavatories to be maintained.
“The EHRC is failing in its duty to uphold the Equality Act when stating scientific facts and defending the law on sex discrimination have become a risk to people’s livelihoods.”