Back in in August I submitted a written complaint to the office of the Surrey Police & Crime Commissioner and Chief Constable Gavin Stephens following incendiary comments made by Surrey’s elected Police & Crime Commissioner, Lisa Townsend, in The Daily Mail, 22nd August 2021.
I am pleased to say I received a reply from Gavin, fully supporting the LGBTQ+ community and Stonewall, and know just how hard the Police in Surrey work towards inclusion & diversity.
I can also confirm that I have been invited to attend a meeting with PCC Lisa Townsend next week.
Unfortunately due to studio commitments I cannot attend, but know that my friends and colleagues of Pride In Surrey will represent our Trans siblings and continue to share the message that Trans Rights Are Human Rights and that we, as Surrey residents, will not tolerate discrimination against the Trans community in Surrey and beyond.
With Reference to the comments made by Police and Crime Commissioner
Daily Mail 22nd August 2021
As a Surrey resident and Patron of Pride in Surrey, may I start by saying I do hope that Lisa Townsend will take the opportunity to meet with the Pride in Surrey Team, who have reached out requesting a meeting following the statement in the Daily Mail regarding Trans people and the LGBT charity Stonewall.
As the PCC role is elected and has the sole purpose of representing the people of Surrey, I would hope that Ms Townsend will take the time to listen to Pride in Surrey and associated trans organisations, including Trans Radio UK, so she can fully represent all of the residents of the county, including the residents who are transgender.
As a minority group who are already disproportionatly subjected to abuse (physical and verbal), violence and discrimination, its is vitally important that the PCC engages direct and in an unbiased way, as the role demands.
Statements of this type from individuals in a position of authority are deeply damaging.
The fact that the person elected to represent the people is making public statements that make the Surrey trans community feel very unsafe needs to be addressed, especially as this is in direct conflict with the public sector equality duty’ that is expected.
Following the comments made in The Daily Mail and on a personal Twitter account, may I ask how the Public Sector Equality Duty is being fulfilled in a professional and unbiased way, without inflaming hostility towards people with the legally protected characteristic of ‘gender reassignment’?
The Equality Act 2010 says public authorities must comply with the public sector equality duty.
This is in addition to their duty not to discriminate.
The duty aims to make sure public authorities think about things like discrimination and the needs of people who are disadvantaged or suffer inequality, when they make decisions about how they provide their services and implement policies.
This should not include posting and sharing incendiary commentary via social media.
May I ask how the PCC will support and encourage Surrey Police in their duty of protection for trans people, and if they can provide evidence or intention of how they will be supporting trans police officers and staff now and in the future.
I fully support The Pride in Surrey Team, and hope that a meeting will take place at the earliest possible time and that a resolution can be found that will provide protection and inclusivity for all Surrey residents, not discriminating against or excluding the trans community.
Patron of Pride in Surrey