#NoDebate = NO DEMOCRACY
Members and supporters of the Green Party of England and Wales (GPEW) are today launching a Green Declaration for Women’s Sex-Based Rights, with over 150 founding signatories, dedicated to the affirmation and protection of women’s and girls’ sex-based rights, inviting others to add their names.
The Declaration has been initiated by GPEW members who believe that the right of women to advocate for women as a biological sex, are being eroded within the GPEW, as elsewhere in society, and that the ‘No Debate’ mantra is being used to curb freedom of speech.
Dismayed by the lack of support in the GPEW for open and respectful discussion about women’s sex-based rights, some members have already left or resigned, while others have been expelled or suspended for long periods of time, including on ‘no-fault suspensions’, for speaking their minds.
Alison Teal, former Sheffield Councillor, currently on a ‘No Fault Suspension’ from the GPEW said: “The systemic harassment, discrimination and silencing of advocates for women’s rights within the Party, including via the complaints system, and on social media, is deeply concerning.”
Many Green Party members believe that the consequences of disregarding the protected characteristic of ‘sex’ are damaging for women and girls, especially lesbians, mothers and those who are disabled; and that a democratic, open political party should be actively welcoming differing viewpoints and freedom of speech.
United Nations Women notes that: “The climate crisis is not “gender neutral”. Women and girls experience the greatest impacts of climate change, which amplifies existing gender inequalities and poses unique threats to their livelihoods, health, and safety.”
The initiators of the Declaration believe that the Green Party should be democratic, strong, and vibrant – advocating for environmental causes, for vital and urgent action on the climate crisis, for peace on our planet, and for international justice.
Imogen Makepeace, Lewes District Green Party Councillor said: “Committed GPEW members, like Alison Teal and Emma Bateman*, passionate and dedicated to action on climate change, are being all too frequently disenfranchised from their Party. This is a bizarre, Kafkaesque situation in what’s supposed to be an open and democratic Party.”
The Green Declaration for Women’s Sex-Based Rights comes in the wake of a similar declaration, launched by members of the Labour Party, concerned about the same issues.
- Emma Bateman, formerly a co-chair of Green Party Women, was expelled from GPEW for her belief that biological sex is real and that women are adult, human females.