WATCH: “I feel as though the media portrays us like we’re not human beings”

In many newspapers, on many radio and tv programmes at the moment, transgender people are attacked and marginalised. So called “gender critical feminists” take to the biggest media outlets in the land to complain that “debate” is being shut down and their “legitimate concerns” are not being listened to.

The thing is, these actions are not consequence free. A report earlier this year by Stonewall found that 41% of transgender people had experienced a hate crime in the last year. That is not far off being half.

I often hear parents of transgender children say that there are two things that scare them most when their children come out to them. The first is the hate crime figures. The second is the suicide rate. Another Stonewall report found that over a quarter of young trans people have attempted suicide and almost nine out of ten had contemplated it. In a climate where over 4 in 5 young trans people experience verbal assault and 3 in 10 are actually physically assaulted, you might say that this is hardly surprising.

Equally not rocket science is the evidence that where trans people are supprted and called by their chosen name, they do a lot better.

So irresponsible media coverage actively harms trans people by fuelling hostility towards them. Stop Funding Hate, an organisation which aims to encourage suppliers not to advertise in newspapers which exacerbate hatred towards particular groups of people has done something to try to counteract this hostile environment for trans people.

Working with Mermaids, an award winning charity which supports transgender young people and their families, Stop Funding Hate has produced this video which illustrates the harm that media coverage can do.

Trans people are under attack. Well done to Stop Funding Hate and Mermaids for highlighting this and showing us what we can do to show that we won’t stand by and see a vulnerable group of people become even more marginalised.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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5 Comments

  • Sarah Brown 4th Oct '18 - 9:54pm

    Being trans in the UK at the moment means facing a daily tidal wave of hate washing over you, with no right of reply or no power to do anything about it.

    I’m not sure how much more people can take.

  • Lorenzo Cherin 4th Oct '18 - 11:35pm

    A touching film, and excellent posting.

    I would agree with Frankie, and understand Sarah.

    Nobody should completely feel they have no way to respond and no power, though it makes it difficult not t when hate r anger is rife.

    My view is the less bitter and more eloquent, the better the arguments can be heard against prejudice.

    It is tenacity and articulation, yes from heartrending emotion, that gets you heard, any of us in a difficult situation.

    The best arguments and greatest battles are won in peace not war often. Alas too many want a war of words. Better not to give them that , but people might well respond to education and understanding , and learn and understand.

  • OnceALibDem 5th Oct '18 - 7:05pm

    You can do something. Respond to this https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/reform-of-the-gender-recognition-act-2004

    I posted this before and one long standing Lib Dem member of pretty impecable liberal values on social issues said they were shocked by the number of inequalities that needed addressing.

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