Submission for EHRC Dossier – Aug 2023

Green Party Women Social Media Officers
Submission for EHRC Dossier – Aug 2023

On 5th April this year Green Party women posted the following tweet thread to their
twitter account:

“GPW welcomes the EHRC calling for “the public debate on issues of sex and
gender” to move “to a more informed and constructive basis.” We in GPW have
differing views on this topic but are committed to well-informed and respectful
discourse on the subject.”

Those of us who support single-sex spaces recognise it’s important for the meaning
of sex to be clarified so that EA2010 can be correctly applied as it was originally
intended. We feel it is vital for females’ safety, dignity & fairness that they are
protected on the basis of sex

GPW is clear that this new information from EHRC should not leave trans ppl without
legal protection from discrimination. We will continue to monitor the announcements
from EHRC and show our support or disagreement as the conversation continues.”

Before we discuss this tweet, let me give some background context. At our first
meeting in February, [ML],[JE] and I were appointed as the Green Party Women
Social Media Officers. This appointment was made by the full committee. We as
SMOs are ultimately responsible for the Green Party Women’s social media output
but we often collaborate with other members of the committee to draft messages or
discuss content. We have developed social media guidelines and a strategy to bring
cohesion to our external comms and clarify these collaborative processes. We also
produce monthly reports on our work: all of these documents can be found on green
spaces. As I understand it, this way of working is a first for a special interest group
within the party.

Members should also know that we have worked hard to promote Green Party
Women and the party through our DAILY twitter presence and FB posts. The
statistics speak for themselves. Our Twitter followers have had an uplift of 8% in the
5 short months since we took office. However, despite this we have been subject to unwarranted criticism and attack since taking up our roles.

The most extreme example of this is the way we have been treated in response to
the tweet thread above.

This is a moderate tweet which does not break any party policy. It was discussed
amongst the committee over a period of 36 hours because we wanted to give a
balanced response to a letter written by the EHRC to the Minister for Women and
Equalities. It is, of course, entirely within our remit as the Special Interest Group for
Women and Girls to respond to such a letter. Members should note, the tweet does
not endorse the EHRC nor the content of its letter wholesale, it just commends the
call for debate to be conducted on an informed and constructive basis. Those who
find the second tweet in the thread challenging should reference Green Party Policy
HE204 which clearly states the need for single sex wards.

This tweet has resulted in:
● Multiple complaints being made against different members of our cttee but
ONLY those who hold so called ‘gender critical’ views.
● All the complaints, with one exception, have called for our expulsion from the
party – a cause of extreme distress to members of our committee who work
tirelessly for the party. This is clear evidence of the complaints being
vexatious.
● However, these complaints have been allowed to progress within our
disciplinary system rather than being dismissed for being vexatious or
unfounded.
● There have been 3 attempts at our monthly public meetings for the SM
Officers to be admonished and humiliated in public, including stripping us of
our responsibilities!
● Discussion about this tweet has dominated recent GPRC meetings where
members of this senior party body have further called for us to be sanctioned.
● In addition, GPRC called for 2 emergency meetings specifically about this
tweet, one of which was during an election period where you might think they
had more important things to discuss. At no point were Green Party Women
consulted about these meetings.
● In our absence committee members were accused of transphobia and subject
to other slurs against their character such as the accusation that our
committee has been infiltrated by right-wing extremists. We’re all
left/left-leaning women and strong trade unionists! This insulting nonsense
was particularly distasteful.

Such an egregious response to the tweets is totally unjust. This naked bullying and
intimidation goes completely against Green Party values. GPW are of course entitled
to express our own views in law and in line with party regulations. What is more, the
tweets received an overwhelmingly positive response. People are still finding it and
liking it to this day. It got more likes than anything Green Party Women has EVER
posted: lots of reasonable, positive responses from people saying “YES! Discussion,
clarification & an informed debate on legislation is necessary and welcome”

A complaint against the 3 of us has now been submitted by senior party members:
almost 3 months after the tweet was posted. And although the tweet was written and
voted on by the whole GPW cttee, only the 3 social media officers, all of whom have
gender critical beliefs, are named in the complaint – so it is politically-motivated. We
feel harassed, victimised and can evidence that it IS really unsafe to speak up for our
beliefs, i.e. the reality of women’s rights.