[A] series of court cases, most recently those of academic Jo Phoenix and social worker Rachel Meade, shows that workplace discrimination against those who don’t support self-ID or believe that “trans women are women” continues.
If Phoenix and Meade were the only examples of this kind of persecution they might be dismissed as one-offs. Some discrimination lawyers are sanguine that employers will soon catch up with a dynamic area of case law. But other gender-critical people have faced similar mistreatment.
Allison Bailey, a barrister and one of the founders of the LGB Alliance, was discriminated against by Garden Court Chambers.
Also in the pipeline are three separate claims against the Green party, and two more against the Open University. A constructive dismissal case brought by a former employee of Edinburgh Rape Crisis Centre is under way. Other women, including the dancer Rosie Kay and children’s author Rachel Rooney, have talked and written about losing work opportunities due to their beliefs, but have not taken employers to court.
None of these women was accused of harassing or discriminating against a transgender person in their workplace – which is, of course, illegal, since gender reassignment, like religion or belief, is a personal characteristic protected in law. Each was targeted on the basis of the belief they hold. Outside courtrooms as well as within them, gender-critical women will continue to seek accountability for what has gone on. Yes, there are other problems in the world to worry about. But we won’t forget the 18 months during which our long-held feminist beliefs about sex were officially deemed “not worthy of respect in a democratic society” – or stop being grateful for the courage of women such as Jo Phoenix and Rachel Meade.