21 December 2021
Dear Shahid Naqvi
EBSWA is an alliance of social workers formed to combat the spread of unevidenced and ideological claims about the nature of sex and gender which have gained currency in recent years.
We are writing to protest PSW coverage of the issue, consistently promoting one view, asking social workers to uncritically accept unevidenced claims about gender identity as the basis for policy and practice.
The December edition of PSW continued this editorial bias, and contained a double page article by Eric Banks, described as the LGBTQ+ representative for the Social Work Action Group, offering advice on working in what is described as “a more gender diverse age”. The article predictably promotes uncritical acceptance of the importance of affirmation of gender identity in social work practice.
The author acknowledges that there is an opposing “gender critical” view but mischaracterises this as “working to enforce gender binaries” and the belief that “gender is biological”. This is the opposite of the truth, as your readers would know if you had covered the issue with appropriate balance. However, PSW has not covered the issue well at all and has allowed opposing views to not only be misrepresented, but also to be condemned as bigoted and abusive. The one page that you did afford to Kay Beaumont was hidden at the back of the magazine and presented as a personal plea for “respectful discussion”.
We now write to ask that you afford EBSWA and other gender critical views the space, prominence and respect that you have afforded to those who support the affirmation of children’s and adults’ “gender identity” in social work. This needs to include the voices of the growing movement of detransitioned young women, like Keira Bell, and Sinead Watson, and of parents who are pleading for caution and care in respect of life changing decisions being forced on their children. Organisations such as GENSPECT, led by the well-respected therapist Stella O’Malley, and Transgender Trend should also be given space to set out their well balanced and evidenced advice on responding to children confused and distressed about sex and gender.
We hope that you will agree to devote space in the January or February edition of PSW to providing readers with the opportunity to engage with the evidence for the case against gender identity ideology.
On behalf of the Alliance