news

Keir Starmer says it's 'not right' to say only women have a cervix - as Sajid Javid says he's denying 'scientific fact'

"It is something that shouldn't be said," says Labour leader Starmer.

2021-09-27

Words: Jamie Tabberer; pictures: Wiki

Labour leader Keir Starmer has said it is "not right" to say only women have a cervix - leading to Conservative MP and Health Secretary Sajid Javid accusing him of denying "scientific fact."

Starmer made the comments when asked about transphobia on The Andrew Marr Show yesterday.

Speaking in Brighton, where Labour is holding its Annual Conference, host Marr asked Starmer: "Is it transphobic to say only women have a cervix?"

To this, Starmer replied: "It is something that shouldn't be said, it is not right."

"And he wants to run the NHS"

Responding to Starmer's comments, Health Secretary Sajid Javid yesterday tweeted: "Total denial of scientific fact. And he wants to run the NHS."

Starmer's interview follows his remarks last week that he backs "women-only spaces" in "certain circumstances."

Earlier this month, a trans man told the BBC that confusion over his gender identity led to a delay in his getting a hospital appointment following an abnormal cervical screening result.

According to the outlet. the 29-year-old from Hull - who medically transitioned at 18 and retained his cervix - was asked why a man needed an appointment after he was referred to a hospital following his screening.

Starmer's interview also follows last week's headlines over Rosie Duffield, Labour MP for Canterbury, calling on Starmer to meet with her and other female MPs to "clarify" the party's stance on trans issues.

Duffield recently told Radio 4's Today programme she is not attending the Labour conference after receiving threats of violence over her views on trans issues.

“I took the decision a few weeks ago not to go,” she said. “I didn’t want to be the centre of attention. This is Keir Starmer’s first conference speech since the pandemic. I think it’s really important we focus on that and the policies that emerge from [the] conference. I really did not want to be the news story.”

Meanwhile, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan spoke out in support of trans and non-binary Londoners last week.

He told Attitude of recently-leaked remarks from Tory equalities minister Kemi Badenoch about trans women being "men": "Those comments don’t help. I think they cause huge offense. [...] The trans community is one of the most vulnerable in our society. We should be looking to support them, rather than playing on stereotypes or fears.”

The Attitude October issue is out now.

Subscribe in print and get your first three issues for just £1 each, or subscribe digitally and get 50% off until 26/9/2021.