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Unite 'firmly committed' to trans rights, delegates affirm

UNITE is “firmly committed” to rights for transgender people, its conference stated today.

Delegates meeting at the union’s biennial conference in Brighton voted to “empower” transgender members of Unite and expressed “concern” for transgender members who are harassed and subject to violence.

Moving the motion, Unite executive council member Sarah Douglas said that there had been an “upheaval” in consciousness for understanding the struggles of transgender people.

The motion praised Unite for providing activists with “tools” to help workers understand transgender issues, such as the Trans Equality Guide.

Ms Douglas also urged members to avoid “toxic and vitriolic” attacks made against transgender people.

Clare Keogh, a Unite young member from London, expressed her anger that transgender union members feel like cancelling their membership due to harassment from fellow members, and reminded delegates of the violence that transgender people face.

Ms Douglas said that “there are lots of societal concerns when it comes to non-binary or gender-variant people.

“But we as a union are not used to working hard to improving society.

"Let me be very clear when I believe that trans men or women would not abuse any relaxation in the process for a gender recognition certificate," she argued.

"There does need to be a full and proper consultation in the process."

Chris Turnham, South East said that statistics prove that employers admit they would be less likely to employ trans people.

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