Labour council candidate Laura Pascal suspended after transphobia allegations

Keir Starmer and Labour Party banners

A Labour Party candidate for a closely-contested council by-election has been suspended following allegations of transphobia.

Laura Pascal was set to stand for Labour in Hackney’s Cazenove ward, in London, on Thursday (18 January) but has now been  “administratively suspended” from the party after accusations of transphobia were lodged against her.

Coverage by On London suggests multiple complaints have been made against Pascal by other Labour members.

In recent weeks, anti-trans social media posts Pascal has shared and liked have been screenshotted and reshared on X/Twitter by people opposed to her views on sex and gender. 

Such social media activity includes liking a post which likens trans women’s existence to Blackface and writing “trans women are not female. By definition they are male”.  

In July 2023, Pascal posted the following, which she pinned to the top of her account: “My embodied reality as a member of the oppressed sex class is experienced in a world where biology has a significant impact. You can believe what you want but I believe that biological sex is a real thing and neither law or some kind of new scientific concensus wld change that.” In her X/Twitter profile she describes herself as “feminist”.

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A physical poster of Pascal’s social media activity was up up on a lamppost in the ward with the words “stop supporting a candidate promoting this on Twitter” in bold.

The Labour Party told PinkNews that due to the short period of time between her suspension and the by-election “there is no way to reflect this change on the ballot paper” and if she is elected Pascal will sit as an independent councillor.

Members of Hackney Labour were also informed on Saturday (13 January) that campaigning plans for the final days before the election have been scrapped.

Following her suspension, Labour MP Rosie Duffield – who has courted controversy for her own views on trans rights – reposted a statement from Labour Women’s Declaration on Pascal’s suspension and added: “#IStandwithLauraPascal”. 

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