Against transphobic healthcare policy – Medact signs NSUN statement

In response to the recent transphobic comments made and policies discussed at the Conservative Party Conference 2023, Medact expresses its solidarity with trans people in the UK and globally by signing on to this statement by the National Survivors User Network (NSUN).

This government claims to speak on behalf of healthcare workers – but we denounce this and recognise the rights of trans people to access patient centred healthcare in settings which best align with their gender. We have signed as an organisation, but Medact members and other health workers can also add their support as individuals if they wish.

– Medact Sheffield

At the Conservative party conference this month we heard deeply offensive and harmful remarks about trans people, specifically trans women, and their place in healthcare settings. These comments have come from individuals in some of the most senior positions in Government. We know this is incorrect and dangerous rhetoric and we stand against the scapegoating of trans people. 

Comments at the conference focussed in particular on trans women. Transmisogyny has no place in government or healthcare. Women, cis and trans, face abuse and harm in healthcare settings. Implying that trans women are dangerous to cis women in healthcare settings is factually incorrect and appears intended to stoke hatred and fear of trans people. It misrepresents the problem of abuse in care settings and continues to fail all women. 

As mental health organisations, charities, and concerned individuals working in the sector, we stand in solidarity with trans people and recognise the devastating impact of transphobia. 

Transphobia perpetuated and intensified in this way impacts people’s lives and their health: a 2023 report by Just Like Us showed that 88% of trans adults between 18 and 25 in the UK have experienced suicidal thoughts. 

People should receive care, including mental health care, in the setting that best aligns with their gender identity. This is current NHS policy. Even with such policies, transphobia still operates in healthcare settings and we have a long way to go before care is truly trans inclusive and reflects the protections trans people have under the Equality Act. 

As people who advocate for the rights of people who experience mental ill-health, distress, and trauma, we are standing together, committed to speaking out against transphobic rhetoric, policy and practice.

View the original statement and full list of signatories on NSUN’s website. 

Add your support

Together with NSUN, we are calling on other mental health organisations and charities, as well as individual health workers, to add their names in support of this statement.

If you would like to add your individual or organisational signature to this statement, please fill out this short form or email [email protected] with your name (and if desired, your organisation/role or job title), or if signing as an organisation, your organisation’s name.