Metro newspaper runs full-page ad attacking transgender rights reforms

The Advertising Standards Authority is to investigate whether a full-page ad in UK newspaper Metro opposing transgender rights reforms has broken advertising standards.

Wednesday’s London edition of the free-sheet newspaper carried a full-page ad from the group Fair Play for Women referencing the government’s consultation on gender recognition reforms.

The ad questions whether “someone with a penis is a woman” and refers to transgender women as “male-bodied people.”

The ad’s publication comes in the final days of a government consultation on proposed changes to the 2004 Gender Recognition Act that would streamline the process for trans people to gain legal recognition as their chosen gender. The public consultation ends on October 19.

The ad in the Metro (Nick Duffy)

Critics have accused the newspaper of taking money from the group to publish “anti-trans propaganda.”

Metro‘s advertising pack lists the cost of a full-page print advert in the London edition at £40,000.

Fair Play for Women’s website claims it relies “completely on donations made by our supporters.” Two recent public crowdfunding campaigns to cover the group’s campaigning activities raised a combined total of £33,715.

A transgender Metro reader, Katie, told PinkNews of her shock at seeing the ad when picking up the newspaper on Wednesday.

She said: “When I opened my copy of Metro this morning on the way to work, I was shocked and dismayed to find they’d published a full-page ad by an extremist, transphobic political group, which was full of misinformation and scaremongering about trans women like me.”

Katie added: “This has left me wondering how a fringe minority of paranoid bigots who fixate on people like me simply because we happen to be trans have so much money to waste on advertising their own hang-ups to the rest of us.

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