Head of transgender children’s charity Mermaids targeted with vile abuse and threats

The CEO of transgender children’s charity Mermaids has been targeted with threats and abuse – in the wake of a string of negative press coverage of their work.

Mermaids, a support group for families of transgender and gender non-confirming children, has been the target of repeated media attacks over the past few months amid an uptick in an anti-trans narrative across much of the British press.

The Sunday Times recently admitted details of a story it published criticising the charity were untrue.

And as anti-trans sentiment increases, Mermaids CEO Susie Green – a PinkNews Award winner and herself the parent of a transgender child – has been targeted with a spate of abuse and threats.

PinkNews understands that West Yorkshire Police is investigating abusive messages sent to the CEO.

Although many messages have been removed, PinkNews found a string of tweets from anti-transgender campaigners that remain online accusing Ms Green of “castrating” her transgender daughter, comparing her to “child abusers or paedophiles”, and calling for her to be prosecuted or jailed.

Susie Green at the PinkNews Awards, pictured with former Education Secretary Justine Greening (Photo by Chris Jepson for PinkNews)

Responding to supporters on Twitter, Ms Green said: “I have no issue with free speech, but relentless and continual harassment causing distress to both myself and my daughter is not free speech.”

She added: “Thank you for all the support, it is very much appreciated. This is part of an ongoing investigation, and I cannot comment further until the police have done their job.”

In a statement, Mermaids hit out at the abuse sent to Ms Green.

Susie Green at the 2017 PinkNews Awards (Photo by Chris Jepson for PinkNews)

It said: “As a charity founded to help transgender children and their families, we are there to support any gender-questioning or transgender child, young person or their family members who may need us.

“This includes our CEO Susie Green, who has recently been the target of a campaign of harassment and transphobic hate on social media. While she may be the public face of Mermaids, she is also a mother of a now adult trans daughter.

“Susie has worked tirelessly for the Mermaids charity for over 17 years – the last 2 of which in the position of CEO. She is a highly regarded ally within the LGBT+ community and has been recognised for her extensive contributions to supporting gender-questioning and transgender children – being honoured with a National Diversity Award and included on the 2017 Pride Power List.

“The number of young people and families that she has personally supported are too numerous to mention, while she is regarded as a friend by many of them.

“It is for this reason that we unequivocally state our heartfelt support for Susie, and condemn any and all malicious communications that have, and continue to be sent to her.

“We can’t comment on an ongoing police investigation, however, while we support free speech this does not include ongoing persistent harassment causing alarm and distress.”