SNP’s Mhairi Black hits out at ‘ludicrous’ newspaper smears on transgender people

The SNP’s Mhairi Black has hit out at a continued stream of negative stories in the British press targeting transgender people.

Black, the 23-year-old Member of Parliament for Paisley and Renfrewshire South, spoke out this week against the anti-trans coverage that has dominated the front pages of much of the British press for more than six months.

The Times and Sunday Times newspapers have published dozens of stories questioning transgender equality since the “trans hysteria” began, with activists importing tactics from anti-LGBT evangelicals in the US.

In her column in the Daily Record, the out MP hit back at the negative coverage, which threatens to undermine plans to streamline gender recognition laws in line with international standards.

Ms Black wrote: “Unsurprisingly, right-wing newspapers have responded with the same sort of hysteria, discriminatory attitudes, and ludicrous claims that they previously targeted at gay people in the 1980s, 90s, and more recently during the debate over same-sex marriage.

“Those newspapers need to take a long hard look at themselves – they are part of the problem.

“Trans people must be able to live their lives freely, without facing unnecessary barriers and discrimination. It’s not easy being trans in our society, but these reforms will help, just as they have in other countries like Ireland, Norway, Denmark and Malta.”

Mhairi Black MP (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

She added: “Even in Scotland, trans people face an almost unparalleled level of prejudice and discrimination – and that is something that should shame us all.

“Equality Network’s 2017 Hate Crime report found that 80% of trans people have been the victim of hate crime, including verbal abuse, physical attacks, and sexual assaults.

“For many trans people, receiving abuse is a regular day-to-day occurrence. It can’t be right that in the 21st Century many trans people can’t even walk down the street, get through their working day, or go out with their friends, without facing some form of prejudice.

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