Gender role stereotypes are pivotal in prohibiting women’s full equality. The Transgender phenonomen is a key element in enforcing those stereotypes, rather than dismantling barriers for women and girls.
As outlined on our Transgenderism & Children page, we are against prescribed gender roles and stereotypes for women/girls or men/boys. We believe that everyone should be free to express themselves without these old-fashioned constraints.
Over forty years after the UK Equal Pay Act¹, and almost forty years after the UK Sex Discrimination Act¹, women are still routinely paid 80-85p on the pound compared to men. Some sectors remain male-dominated professions. See this 2009 US study for a graphic illustration, and also The Fawcett Society research. The concept of “men’s work/women’s work” and “men’s worth/women’s worth” remains firmly in place.
Women’s full equality in the workplace has yet to be achieved.
One of the prime mechanisms inhibiting equality for women is based on gender role stereotypes – that women are not able to do certain jobs, or if they do those jobs, that they are not ‘worth’ as much as a man doing the same job – even though this is clearly against UK Law, it is still a widely-held societal belief.
Whilst the Government and larger companies have instituted Equality Monitoring, there is an additional problem that remains unaddressed. The majority of legally recognised Transgender persons are male-to-female (“MTF”), and the majority of those are “late transitioners” – that is, men who have worked most of their lives as men, without suffering the same workplace discrimination as women/females. Prior to transition, many of these MTFs have attained senior positions within their profession, or are in male-dominated professions (eg IT). After transition, many retain their seniority in some form. When Equalities Monitoring survey these positions, industries and seniorities, post-transition (and with a GRC), these individuals now “count” as females. Born-females still remain on the outer, and an appearance of equality has been achieved at the expense of born-females. True Equalities Monitoring needs to separately count born-females from MTF transgenders.
In order to ‘pass as females’, many MTF transgenders need to uphold femininity stereotypes in dress and make-up – this hinders born-females who wish to divest of the rigidity of ‘feminine dress’. Some born-females find the dress and behaviour of MTF transgenders to be a parody, similar to Drag Queens.
As born-females, many of us wish to dress in a manner free from rigid femininity constraints and stereotypes.
1 The Equal Pay Act (1970) and The Sex Discrimination Act (1975) were repealled in full by the introduction of The Equality Act (2010)