As Pride month draws to a close, we want to make clear our ongoing support for the trans community. In response to the recent transphobic rhetoric in the UK, we commit ourselves publicly to honouring the roots of the movement. Pride began as a protest, organised by a black trans woman, because the basic human rights of queer people were not being met. This work must be continued, upheld, and understood.
We are dedicated to creating a safe and welcoming space, as well as providing tangible help and artist development to our LGBTQIA+ members. We are in the process of strengthening the values of equality and diversity in our programming, commissioning, outreach, bursaries, and overall structure.
Last year the UK Government commissioned a survey on whether to reform the Gender Recognition Act, to allow Self-ID. This would reduce the lengthy and emotionally destructive procedure currently in place to legally affirm your gender. Despite results showing 70% of the public were in favour, the decision has been taken to shelve the much-needed reform, and instead begin plans to exclude trans people from single-sex spaces.
This move would deny agency and basic human rights to an already vulnerable section of our society. This affects every aspect of life, from which public toilets can safely be used, to accessing healthcare – any healthcare. Once our buildings re-open, we will be adding our public toilets to the REFUGE restrooms app, to ensure everyone feels welcome, and knows where we are.
The pervasive myth that trans people are a new development in society, is incredibly damaging. The erroneous idea that anyone transgender is following a fad has been allowed to spread through lack of exposure to information and history. We are very grateful to those who have spent time putting together resources to redress this, including Lucy Diavolo who wrote these two brilliant articles: Gender Variance Around the World Over Time and LGBTQ Institute in Germany Was Burned Down by Nazis which details the destruction of the libraries of the Institut für Sexualwissenschaft in 1933 by Nazi demonstrators.
We are committed to supporting trans artists, and the trans community as a whole. We will defend your rights as far as we can, and use our platform and programme to combat misinformation.
As part of this ongoing work, we put together this list of resources by, for and about transgender people: