EUROPE – Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson commented to reporters on Wednesday that he believes transgender women should not be allowed to compete in sporting events with biological women, in addition to showing support for women-only spaces in restrooms and other public areas.
“I don’t think that biological males should be competing in female sport events. Maybe that’s a controversial thing, but it just seems to me to be sensible,” Johnson said. “I also happen to think that women should have spaces – whether it is in hospitals or prisons or changing rooms or wherever – which are dedicated to women.”
LGBT organizations were already critical of Johnson earlier this month after he neglected to include trans children in Britain’s efforts to outlaw various types of “conversion therapy,” saying at the time that,
“I don’t think it’s reasonable for kids to be deemed competent to take decisions about their gender or irreversible treatments that they may have. I just think there should be parental involvement at the very least”
Furor from trans advocates grew further after transgender cyclist Emily Bridges – a biological male who competed in men’s events before transitioning in 2020 – was not allowed to compete in the women’s British National Omnium Championships last weekend.
The reason for Bridges’ ouster was, according to British Cycling’s governing body, a failure “to meet the guidelines for transgender cyclists,” in addition to several competitors threatening to boycott the event if Bridges was allowed to compete.
Johnson said that he felt badly about the reactions of LGBT organizations, but reiterated his personal stance that trans women do not belong in biological women-only spaces.
“Well I’m sad about their reaction, because these are good organizations with whom we have had great relations over a long period of time. I’m very proud, by the way of everything I’ve done – our party has done – to champion these issues,” Johnson said. “We will have a ban on gay conversion therapy, which to me is utterly abhorrent. But there are complexities and sensitivities when you move from the area of sexuality to the question of gender, and there, I’m afraid, are things that still need to be worked out.”