TFL ‘appalled’ at anti-trans stickers on London Underground over LGBTQ+ inclusive adverts

Transport of London (TfL) has said it is “appalled” at anti-trans stickers that have been used to deface rainbow posters at London Underground stations, and is working to remove them.

The stickers were placed on posters advertising British Airways’ sponsorship of The Rainbow Stage at the BST Festival in Hyde Park. 

This year’s BST Festival, which takes place from 23 June to 9 July, sees headliners including Guns N’ Roses, BLACKPINK, P!nk, Lana Del Rey, Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen, take to the stage over three weekends.

Rainbows criss-cross the posters, which run alongside the escalators at the Central Line station, and on some of them stickers with the words ‘your mum’s a TERF’ and ‘celebrate diversity by silencing women’ have been stuck. 

The stickers are in reference to the notion by so-called gender critical activists that trans rights and women’s rights are mutually exclusive. 

It is unclear when the stickers were first placed but they were spotted and still visible at the station on Monday (26 June). 

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A sticker placed at Marble Arch station. Best quality available. (PinkNews)

A TfL spokesperson told PinkNews: “We are appalled by this offensive material in one of our stations and are removing them as quickly as possible. 

“We will take the strongest action against anyone caught posting these on our network.”

“Hatred and prejudice have absolutely no place on our network and all instances are taken extremely seriously.” 

A spokesperson for British Airways also said the airline was seeking to have the stickers removed from the advertisements. 

This is not the first time brands have come under fire for promoting Pride Month and LGBTQ+ inclusion. 

In recent months, several businesses have become the focus of right-wing ire for including LGBTQ+ in their campaigns or selling products aimed at the LGBTQ+ community. 

During Pride Month, in particular, countless brands including Starbucks, Adidas and Kohls faced backlash from conservative groups. 

In May, US retail chain Target removed some Pride products from certain stores, or moved the displays to the back of stores, following violent threats towards staff from bigots. 

“Since introducing this year’s collection, we’ve experienced threats impacting our team members’ sense of safety and well-being while at work,” Target said in a statement.

“Given these volatile circumstances, we are making adjustments to our plans, including removing items that have been at the centre of the most significant confrontational behaviour.”

Bigots subsequently filmed themselves inside Target stores criticising the products, destroying displays and berating staff. 

Pride collection in Target store
Bigots have been boycotting brands left, right and centre for LGBTQ+ content. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The reaction followed the unprecedented negative response Bud Light faced after  collaborating with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney in April, in which the company gave the star a singular can of beer with her face on it. 

The beer brand saw billions wiped from its share price following boycotts and transphobic individuals took it upon themselves to smash Bud Light cans in stores and share social media videos of them shooting the drink with guns. 

On the other side of the pond in London, TfL has also not escaped wider criticism for support of Pride Month. 

A small number of buses and trains have been decorated in the colours of the Progress Pride flag and feature a diverse range of cartoons to promote inclusivity. 

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan shared images of the vehicles and was quickly blasted with vile responses riddled with homophobia, transphobia and downright bigotry.

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