Statement on today’s ruling by the Court of Session

8 December 2023

LGB Alliance Statement on the ruling by the Court of Session that the UK government acted lawfully in blocking the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill

We are delighted with the Court of Session’s decision and hope this flawed Bill will now be withdrawn. LGB Alliance has campaigned against the Bill for four years, because Gender Self-ID makes a mockery of the rights and protections of LGB people under the Equality Act – which were always intended to be based on biological sex, not “gender”. The recent ruling by Lady Haldane, that “sex” includes persons in possession of a Gender Recognition Certificate, highlights both the danger of easing restrictions on the provision of a GRC and the urgent need to clarify the meaning of “sex” in the Equality Act.

We were also greatly concerned by the Bill’s flagrant disregard for safeguarding. The public saw this play out in relation to the rights of women prisoners, with the absurd decision to place a convicted rapist in a women’s prison. It soon became clear that the Scottish public strongly opposed the Bill. The Scottish government nonetheless pressed ahead with its policy based on ideological conviction with no regard for public opinion, the facts, or women’s rights.

Few people were aware, however, that the rights and interests of lesbians, gay men and bisexuals were also under attack. Hardly surprising, when all the country’s LGBT+ groups promoted gender self-ID, creating the impression of a united community. These groups rounded on the one organisation that opposed the Bill – LGB Alliance – posting an ad to show that we were an outlier. We were.

GRR Scotland Groups

Besides the risk to the protections of LGB people under the Equality Act, LGB Alliance was also alarmed by the Bill’s disregard for safeguarding – by its lowering of the age for official gender recognition to 16 and its removal of the need for a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria.

As so many well-researched articles and books have shown since we first opposed this Bill in 2020, children and young people need and deserve protections against rash decisions and the seductive videos of online influencers.

Our opponents have attacked us with a series of outlandish accusations. Let’s be clear. It is not bigotry to assert that men cannot be lesbians and women cannot be gay men. Safeguarding is not “right wing”. The Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill is a ridiculous piece of legislation that should now be consigned to oblivion. We are proud to defend the rights and interests of LGB people and we will continue to do so.