Statement 14th of November
LGBTI people’s rights are facing significant opposition, which in Europe shows particularly as opposition to trans and non-binary people’s rights. A wide range of actors oppose LGBTI people’s rights with a view to defend “traditional family values” and gender roles and to undermine women’s, LGBTI people’s and other groups’ right to their body. The intention is to deny trans and non-binary people’s control over their own gender and body.
Trans people’s rights are also being opposed in the name of feminism This implies a narrow definition of womanhood, and the intention is to exclude trans and non-binary persons from the definition. It is alleged that trans women pose a threat to the equality or even safety of cis women. These claims define womanhood narrowly, relying on old concepts of gender. Research has shown, however, that these security threats are completely unjustified, and the feelings of insecurity are due to active scaremongering. False fears can be alleviated by increasing awareness of gender diversity.
Categorising women into “real” and “other” kinds of women does nothing to promote women’s rights. On the contrary, it will empower those who aim to restrict women’s rights.
Seta’s general assembly concludes that women’s rights can be promoted only by taking the diversity of women into account. For example, violence against women is an experience shared by both cis and trans women as well as many non-binary persons. Women’s experiences differ because of factors such as ethnic background, skin colour and ability to function. Promoting issues specific to cis women does not necessitate the discrimination of trans people. Therefore, feminism needs to take the diversity of women and various experiences into account.
Seta’s general assembly appeals to feminist organisations to clearly denounce feminism that opposes the rights of trans women and non-binary persons. We encourage feminist organisations to invite trans and non-binary persons to engage in equality debate and consider together how to promote women’s rights without discrimination.
General assembly was held 2021 as an online meeting on 13th and 14th of November.