Green Party suspends Sheffield candidate over transphobia allegations
Green Party candidate Alison Teal has reportedly been suspended from the party over allegations of transphobia.
Teal was selected by the Green Party to contest Sheffield Central, the seat which Eddie Izzard is hoping to run for as a Labour candidate, in the next general election.
However, her future with the party is uncertain after she was handed a no-fault suspension over social media posts labelled transphobic by some, according to The Star.
Teal has used her Twitter to criticise the use of puberty blockers, and to defend the LGB Alliance and Fair Play For Women, both considered anti-trans pressure groups. She has called “gender ideology” “regressive” and advocates for “sex-based” rights. She denies that she is transphobic and says she supports trans rights.
In October, she was criticised for sharing a tweet that linked Izzard using a women’s toilet with “placing a male sex offender in jail with women”.
Powerful piece by @JeanHatchet “The loss of women’s rights starts with looking the other way for an Eddie Izzard and ends with a society that doesn’t flinch at placing a male sex offender in jail with women.” Serious issues we must discuss.@SheffieldGreens https://t.co/zpEaSUhJV3
— Alison Teal ??? (@alisonclareteal) October 1, 2022
Shortly after, five Green Party councillors announced they would “not campaign for any candidate who discriminates against trans people”, understood to be a reference to Teal.
Councillors Angela Argenzio, Alexi Dimond, Brian Holmshaw, Ruth Mersereau and Martin Phipps said: “I am a Sheffield Green Party member and I support trans rights.”
Teal said she is “optimistic” that she and her Green Party colleagues might repair their “differences”.
She added: “It’s deeply regrettable that some of my former colleagues brought our political disagreement into the public eye and one has brought a complaint against me that’s led to my no-fault suspension by the party.”
Quoting a former friend, The Sheffield Tribune reported that Teal has already caused “lots of toxicity and fallouts and tears and anger and complaints”.
Since news of the suspension emerged, Teal’s Twitter account has since been filled with retweets defending her views, likening the accusations to a “witch hunt”.
Teal is banned from party meetings before her complaint is heard. A date has not yet been set.
Transphobia disputes between Green parties
Last month, The Scottish Greens temporarily cut ties with the Green Party of England and Wales over “transphobic rhetoric and conduct”.
Rainbow Greens, an LGBTQ+ branch of the Green Party posted: “Trans people in Scotland, England, Wales & beyond deserve a Green Party where they feel safe & their interests are promoted.”
Trans people in Scotland, England, Wales & beyond deserve a Green party where they feel safe & their interests are promoted
One day, hopefully in the near future, we'll welcome @TheGreenParty back with open arms but this will only happen if they rise to this challenge#sgpconf pic.twitter.com/I9nnnPjmwz— Rainbow Greens (@rainbowgreens) October 16, 2022
Eddie Izzard is currently vying to become the Labour candidate for Sheffield Central. Her five party rivals joined her in a statement in October denouncing the “vitriolic abuse that has been directed towards candidates, including racism and transphobia”.
PinkNews has reached out to Teal and the Green Party councillors mentioned in this article for comment.
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