EHRC Open Letter
To: Equality and Human Rights Commission Fleetbank House 2-6 Salisbury Square London EC4Y 8JX
As leaders of trans and LGBTQ+ organisations we are writing to express our frustration and disappointment at the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s (EHRC) recent record on LGBTQ+ people’s rights and trans people’s rights specifically.
Hate crime against LGBTQ+ people has been rising for years. We continue to experience grave injustice and inequity at school, at work, in the healthcare system, within homelessness and in our communities. These poor experiences are particularly stark for trans people, LGBTQ+ people of colour and for those of us who live in poverty.
The EHRC has a wide range of powers it could use to make equality a reality for our communities, whether influencing public policy debates, strategically litigating to advance our rights, catalysing change in complex policy areas like healthcare or providing guidance that resolves uncertainty and ambiguity about delivering our rights in reality.
We are disappointed that, despite the realms of possibility to improve LGBTQ+ people’s lives and our access to our human rights, the EHRC has driven forward very little for our communities in recent years. Against that backdrop of a lack of support for LGBTQ+ people, we are frustrated that you then chose to intervene in a case to say that so-called ‘gender critical’ beliefs should be a protected philosophical belief.
It was a kick in the teeth to trans people to see the EHRC appear to put their organisational weight behind a movement that has only contributed to rising hate for trans people in communities, creating a policy environment where it is harder for trans people to access their rights.
That the EHRC chose to add their weight to this intervention has sent a deeply damaging message to trans people about their validity and worth. This intervention has lost the trust of trans people and LGBTQ+ people more bro