Anti-trans Hackney Labour candidate Laura Pascal suffers humiliating local election loss to Tory rival

Keir Starmer and Labour Party banners

Labour candidate Laura Pascal has lost to her Tory rival in a Hackney by-election after she was investigated over allegations of transphobia. 

In the week leading up to the council by-election, Pascal was suspended from the Labour party, then reinstated three days later on Wednesday (17 January) following an investigation into complaints of transphobia.

Pascal went on to lose in the by-election for Cazenove, Hackney on Thursday (18 January), with the Conservative candidate, Ian Sharer, winning by 53.8 per cent, and Pascal receiving 31 per cent of the vote. 

The Conservatives have never won in the Cazenove ward of Hackney since it was created in 2002, with Labour gaining from the Liberal Democrats in 2018. 

Ahead of the election in Hackney’s Cazenove ward, On London found that multiple complaints had been made against Laura Pascal by other Labour members.

In recent weeks, Pascal had been seen to share and like several anti-trans posts on X/Twitter, including support for the anti-trans campaign group Sex Matters, and reportedly liking a post which likens trans people to Blackface.

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In July 2023, Pascal posted the following, which she had previously 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.”

Following her suspension, Laura Pascal shared an apology with the Evening Standard, claiming it had been a “mistake” to like tweets that had “caused offence and a great deal of hurt”.

“I offer a heartfelt apology to the people of Cazenove ward, Hackney and anyone who has been offended by my social media activity, which fell well below the standard expected of someone seeking election to public office,” she wrote.

“Ultimately, the people of Cazenove ward will make their own judgements on Thursday, but I hope they can find some reassurance in the fact that I have reflected deeply on my past social media activity and offer this apology unreservedly.”

Despite the apology, Pascal updated her bio on Twitter/X to read: “Unapologetic for my gender critical views.”

Following her suspension, Labour MP Rosie Duffield – who has herself been accused of transphobia – reposted a statement from Labour Women’s Declaration on Pascal’s suspension, adding the hashtag #IStandwithLauraPascal.

PinkNews has contacted the London Labour offices for comment.

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