Labour candidates share support for Eddie Izzard after vile ‘transphobia’
Labour candidates in Sheffield have issued a message of solidarity for trans comedian Eddie Izzard, criticising a wave of “vitriolic abuse” after she announced she would run for MP.
The six candidates for Sheffield Central, including Izzard, said in a statement they were “appalled” by abuse lodged towards candidates.
While the statement didn’t mention Izzard by name, it singled out “transphobia” as well as “racism”.
“We are appalled by the significant amount of vitriolic abuse that has been directed towards candidates, including racism and transphobia,” the candidates wrote on Wednesday (26 October).
“Nobody should be subjected to persistent and targeted abuse because of who they are, how they identify, or their race or ethnicity.
“Sheffield has a proud history as an open, inclusive and anti-racist city… we champion those values and condemn the abuse directed at anyone, including those putting themselves forward to be the next Labour MP of Sheffield Central.”
In solidarity: pic.twitter.com/4CR8Ar0pqc
— Eddie Izzard for Sheffield Central (@EddieIzzardLab) October 26, 2022
Izzard has faced a wave of abuse on social media since announcing her bid for parliament.
In recent days there has been criticism of Labour MP Rosie Duffield, who reportedly said at at an LGB Alliance conference that she would “rather be arrested than call Izzard a woman”.
“I hope not, because you might as well arrest me now. I’m not calling Eddie Izzard a woman,” she said at the idea that misgendering could potentially be made a hate crime in the future.
Duffield has also previously said she would leave the party if the comedian was, hypothetically, selected on an all-women shortlist.
Labour leader Keir Starmer spoke out on LBC calling for “compassion” towards the trans community, adding that all-women shortlists could soon be a thing of the past, as the party has reached its target of 50 per cent female candidates.
Starmer added on the LBC segment that he “knows” Duffield’s position on the trans community, but would not comment further.
Duffield denies that she is transphobic.
Izzard has said she has “never asked” to be on such a shortlist.
“I personally have never asked and have never been offered a place on an all-woman shortlist,” she said.
“This has been a position that I have held since I joined the Labour Party in 1995. I have never changed my position on this and never asked anyone to change the position for me now.
“We are building something special in Sheffield and it isn’t because I’m a comedian, or because I’m trans, or because I’m an actor.
“It is because I have a vision for Sheffield that I want to deliver and people know I will work as hard as I have worked all my life to make this positive change happen.”
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