Elections: the Green party reply

See here for the background to this post.


The Green Party campaigns against all forms of discrimination, including that based on gender identity. A panel “About trans” at our national party conference this month led to the party passing a new and more detailed set of policies on trans rights.
We are committed to pushing for root and branch effort to address transphobia, starting with reviewing and strengthening anti-discrimination legislation so that it provides protection for all trans individuals. Despite recent modest advances, discrimination remains in areas such as housing, education, employment and health. We would also make sure that hate crimes against trans and gay people have the same legal status as any other type of hate crime.
But anti-discrimination laws are just the beginning. A widespread public education campaign is needed, starting with children and young people. We would make LGBTIQ-inclusive sex and relationships education mandatory in all schools, from primary level onwards, and require every school to have an anti-bullying programme that explicitly combats transphobic, homophobic and biphobic bullying. We would also tackle the sensationalised way in which the media often portrays trans people.
Public services also need to provide better for LGBTIQ people. The Green Party would end cuts to the NHS and ensure adequate funding to increase the provision of gender identity clinics across the country. Green MP Caroline Lucas has pushed for a gender identity clinic to be provided in Brighton and Hove to meet the needs of the city’s large transgender population, and has challenged the Secretary of State for Health over long waiting times for referrals. (See http://gscene.com/news/brighton-pavilion-mp-pushes-for-a-gender-identity-clinic-in-brighton/)
The process of transitioning through the NHS should empower, not demean, trans people, and we would support consultation service users on how better the NHS can include trans people’s own expertise and experience in service provision. We also call for a review of access to health services for trans people with a view to removing barriers to help and treatment, especially for children, young people, and those who have self-prescribed or self-funded gender treatment.
Stonewall put the Green-led Brighton Council in first place in the 2014 Education Equality index and has described the council as ‘leading the way’ in celebrating difference and supporting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. Brighton also introduced a landmark trans scrutiny panel looking at how to “make things fairer for trans people who live, work, study or socialise in the city”. The council has started to implement its recommendations, including trans awareness training for councillors, police officers and in schools, allowing the use of gender neutral prefixes on council documentation, gender-neutral toilets, and better collection of data on trans people in Brighton so that services can be allocated. See http://www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/content/council-and-democracy/councillors-and-committees/trans-equality-scrutiny-panel-2013
The Green Party supports the legal recognition of nonbinary genders. Green MP Caroline Lucas signed Early Day Motion 47 last year calling for legal recognition of those who not associate with a particular gender through non gender-specific passports – see http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2014-15/47. This was debated at our recent conference and a motion to make this official Green Party policy is now being worked on further, to make sure that the views of intersex people are taken more fully into account.
Young LGBTIQ have been disproportionately affected by government cuts in youth, housing and social services, particularly those who are estranged from their families. Homelessness rates among young gay, bisexual and transgender people are an outrage. Cuts to older and disabled services will also have a greater impact on LGBTIQ people who are less likely to have children, and may therefore be more reliant on public services. The Green Party would end austerity and restore funding to vital public services.
There is also a lot of work to be done internationally. It is appalling that twenty countries still criminalise transgender identities, and 78 criminalise homosexuality. In many other countries the rights of transgender people are unrecognised and routinely breached. The Green Party will challenge the criminalisation, discrimination and violence faced by transsexuals and homosexuals abroad, and work in solidarity with campaigners in other countries. We will also press the Commonwealth to grant accredited status to a Commonwealth LGBTIQ Association and urge all member states to protect LGBTIQ citizens against discrimination and violence.
Finally, the Green Party is always working to be more inclusive in its own structures. At party conferences, audience members are always referred to in a non-gender specific fashion, and gender-neutral toilets are provided. Gender quotas used within the party are inclusive of non-binary identified individuals (e.g. referring to ‘non-males’ rather than ‘women’) and gender neutral prefixes available when members register their contact details.

19.3.15 – in the Pink News debate the Green party leader Natalie Bennet said that the green party would do X passports and that this was a ‘very important issue’ http://elancane.livejournal.com/27076.html

Recieved by twitter from LGBTIQGreens 14.3.15

Link to copies of tweets on storify.

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Standard form email which didn’t contain any policy information received 13.3.15 . Now replaced with the response 26.3.15.

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