The words mum, dad, boy, girl, he, she, man and woman are amongst the first we learn.
There are many everyday reasons why people might want to refer to someone’s sex or previous name, or to talk about the material reality of the two sexes. People should be able to speak about sex and use sexed language in debates on sex and gender identity, without fear of losing their job or being investigated by the police.
We need to be able to talk about issues such as how crimes should be recorded, how prisons and other single sex services should accommodate transgender people, how the census should record sex, rules for women’s sports cannot only be done generalities. They will necessitate discussion of individual cases and illustrations, and the sex of the people involved.
People asserting their rights to single sex services should be able to do so in plain English and without the barrier of having to perform the mental gymnastics required to avoid “misgendering” or “deadnaming”.
Whats the problem?
In recent years people have been called “hateful” simply for making ordinary, everyday statements about what it means to be male or female.
Public bodies and private entities are silencing and punishing lawful speech about sex and gender as “transphobic”, with people already being removed from social media platforms, having websites and social media forums shut down, being bullied and harassed at work, losing jobs, and being arrested, questioned and prosecuted for communications offences.
Many organisations have adopted policies and guidance which prevent people using ordinary language about the sexes. There are proposals for new laws on hate crimes that would criminalise ordinary talk about the sexes.
The Royal Academy and Belief Discrimination
17th June 2021
Sex Matters has written to the Royal Academy about Jess de Wahls. You can download our letter. Jess de...
Truth and reconciliation
6th June 2021
How should the public sector leave the Stonewall Champions Scheme?
Oxford’s submission to Stonewall
6th June 2021
We are pleased to announce that Michael Biggs, Associate Professor of Sociology at St Cross College, Oxford University, is...
Time to #LeaveStonewall
29th May 2021
This is the letter we have sent to the CEOs of the 850 organisations that are members of the...
The Gender Wars, Academic Freedom and Education
25th March 2021
Guest blog post by Professors Alice Sullivan and Judith Suissa
Stonewalling the Domestic Violence Bill: Why make “misogyny” gender neutral?
13th March 2021
A short month ago there was an attempt to rush a bill through parliament that would set a precedent...
Huddersfield University apologises for “transphobic tweets” investigation
7th March 2021
Huddersfield university has been forced to apologise and pay compensation to a PhD student after they subjected him to...
Leadership starts with the law – briefing for universities on the Reindorf Report
For universities, student unions and service providers reviewing their policies and considering issues of academic freedom.
Response to consultation on proposal on hate crime
Why this reform extends legislation unnecessarily, is based on weak concepts, and ignores harm caused by the law itself.
Reform of communications offences
A detailed explanation of how the proposed law reform would make a bad situation even worse.
Gender Recognition Act reform – evidence submission
We answer the Women and Equalities Select Committee‘s questions and make six recommendations.
Freedom of expression online – response to call for evidence
Looking at the chilling effect censorship has on learning and debate, and counting the cost to democratic society.