LGBT Foundation: Response to Mail on Sunday Article

The Mail published another misleading & inaccurate article about trans young people. Our message is clear- we’re proud to provide vital services that change & save people’s lives. Today the LGBT community stands with our trans family. Read LGBT Foundation’s response:

In the end, equality wins

Paul Martin OBE, Chief Executive of LGBT Foundation and Smyth Harper, Chair of LGBT Foundation respond to the Mail on Sunday, 2nd December 2018.

Earlier this week LGBT Foundation received a call from a Mail on Sunday journalist masquerading as a 13 year old trans person. They requested to access the binder scheme we provide on a confidential basis. A binder is a piece of clothing, similar to a sports bra, which can be worn to flatten the appearance of the chest area when worn under clothes.

The person who took the call sought advice from a trained Safeguarding Officer and were offered access to a binder, on the condition that they would either visit our Community Resource Centre to try on a binder or could provide chest measurements to ensure that the correct sized binder was provided. They also received detailed advice on safe binding, including how long to bind for, when not to bind, and guidance on safe and comfortable use.

All of those involved did a brilliant job. We’re proud of how we responded to this reporter because we provided sensible, compassionate advice to someone pretending to be in need.

Many trans people, and younger people in particular, have nowhere else to turn for confidential information and support on binding, and the cost of quality binders is often prohibitive to people who are already more likely to live in poverty. The alternative to this free service would be, in many cases, young people purchasing cheap and potentially damaging binders online or using other materials to bind which can cause lasting physical damage.

The services we provide to trans people save lives and change them for the better. Every day trans people face discrimination, abuse and hatred and we’re proud to offer them support, help and hope. In a world where 48% of trans people under 26 said they had attempted suicide, and 2 in 5 trans people experienced a hate crime or incident in the last year, the sector needs more, not less investment to urgently tackle the poorer mental health, high poverty levels, and widespread discrimination faced by trans people in their daily lives. At LGBT Foundation our Trans Programme and Trans Advocacy Service builds confidence, reduces isolation, and provides vital community spaces in a society where trans people face daily discrimination.

Throughout our history, our community has come under attack, and the relentless broadside that trans people are currently experiencing is the latest manifestation of this. But, as we have before, we can take comfort and confidence in the knowledge that, together we are stronger and in the end equality always wins. The broader LGBT community will not tolerate hate or injustice. Today, we stand shoulder to shoulder with our trans family and we will continue our work to secure a safe, healthy and equal future for all LGBT people.

Original article on the Daily Mail website: Trans activists send out free breast binders to 13-year-olds in unmarked packages… so their parents don’t find out.