Parliament must not pander to nasty and divisive myths over Gender Recognition Reforms
The world will be watching as Scotland’s reputation as a nation for equality and fairness is put on the line over Gender Recognition Reform, Scottish Greens MSP Maggie Chapman has warned.
The party’s equality spokesperson, Maggie Chapman, urged parliamentary colleagues not to pander to “nasty and divisive rhetoric” which she described as among the most spiteful and dangerous campaigns of disinformation since the lies against repealing Section 28.”
She also warned against an “outrageous and anti democratic” attack on devolution from the UK government which is preparing to call for a delay on the Bill or take other measures to prevent it using powers reserved to Westminster.
Her comments come on the eve of an intensive two days of debate beginning tomorrow that will see the final vote of the Bill scheduled to take place on Wednesday, in what would be a historic step forward for equality.
Maggie Chapman MSP said:
“This is a significant and important Bill, but it has been met with one of the most spiteful and dangerous campaigns of disinformation since the lies against repealing Section 28.
“This is the most scrutinised Bill in the history of the Scottish Parliament, with over six years of discussion and multiple consultations, as well as the formal scrutiny all Bills go through. The UK government’s latest threat to ignore it, and people’s right to be recognised as who they are, is an outrageous and anti-democratic attack on devolution as well as the rights of trans people.
“Far too many have pandered to this divisive and nasty rhetoric and put political games ahead of delivering an important step for equality, with wrecking amendments and transparent attempts to derail the process entirely.
“It is clear that many of those opposing reform to the Gender Recognition Act actually want to repeal the Act in its entirety, because they don’t think trans people exist.
“The whole world is watching what Scotland does next. It is for every party and every MSP to ask themselves how they want their vote to be remembered and what message they want to send.
“Do they want people to remember the role they played in progressing rights, or do they want to be remembered for trying to block them? Will they be remembered for supporting reform that makes life for trans people easier, or remembered for supporting positions that cause years of delay because the Bill gets caught up in legal wrangling?
“Party-political games have played too big a part in this debate. This is about human rights, and it’s time to deliver this long overdue change and give our trans siblings the dignity and respect that they deserve.”