Russell T Davies, Peter Mandelson join gay men speaking out for trans rights

Russell T Davies and Peter Mandelson

Queer as Folk creator Russell T Davies, screenwriter Dustin Lance Black and Labour politician Peter Mandelson are among prominent gay men to sign a #GWithTheT letter in support of trans rights.

The letter published on Thursday (March 14) calls out a backlash against transgender rights in the UK, and makes clear that gay men “stand in public solidarity with our trans siblings.”

The #GWithTheT letter follows a similar #LWithTheT initiative in the lesbian community that sprang up after anti-trans protests at 2018’s Pride in London parade.

#GWithTheT condemns ‘cruelty’ against trans people

The letter states: “As gay men we have watched in horror at the cruelty inflicted upon the trans community.  We are outraged.

“The most vulnerable people in our society are marginalised, scared and endangered.

“Trans communities, and in particular trans children, are under attack on a daily basis.”

The #GWithTheT letter united the gay community in support of trans rights

The #GWithTheT letter united the gay community in support of trans rights (Nick Duffy)

The letter adds: “We support trans communities. We support the proposed changes to the Gender Recognition Act 2004 which seeks to de-medicalise trans people and give them the freedom to be recognised in law with the same ease as trans people in Ireland, Malta and Argentina.

“All trans people want to be able to live without fear or harassment as they go about their daily lives.”

#GWithTheT Signatories come from across gay community

Signatories of the letter, which was organised by GLAAD board member Anthony Watson, include TV doctor Ranj Singh and Guardian columnist Owen Jones.

PinkNews chief executive Benjamin Cohen, Gay Times publisher James Frost and Attitude publisher Darren Styles have all signed the letter, alongside Terrence Higgins Trust CEO Ian Green, Stonewall Scotland director Colin Macfarlane and Albert Kennedy Trust CEO Tim Sigsworth.

It is also signed by actors including Coronation Street‘s Charlie Condou, Will & Grace‘s Leslie Jordan and Star Trek star George Takei.

One of the letter’s signatories, Lord Mandelson, was a key member of the Labour government that passed the Gender Recognition Act.

Though he has spoken about his relationship with his partner in recent years, Mandelson has rarely publicly engaged on LGBT+ issues in the past.

The letter adds: “As gay men, we applaud others’ quest to define themselves and to find their own happiness.

“Every gay man owes, in no small part, the rights and privileges we now enjoy to the courage and sacrifice of our trans siblings who came before. Now we must stand alongside them as they lead the fight for theirs.

“Trans men are men. Trans women are women. Non-binary identities are valid. Trans rights are human rights.”

Anthony Watson explained: “We don’t want trans people to feel demonised or as though they are on the fringes. I hope the letter sends a strong signal to our trans siblings that we stand in solidarity with you.”