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Protesters gather outside a library as parents discuss schools and gender identity

Protesters gather outside a library as parents discuss schools and gender identity

A supporter said why she took part in a protest outside the library in Edinburgh, where a meeting organized by a group of parents concerned about the way gender identity is being taught in schools was taking place.

The event, called ‘school and gender identity’, was organized by Concerned Adults Talkly Openly About Gender Identity Ideology and sparked controversy when the group said the council had told them they would have to pay £600 for protection after organizing a counter-demonstration.

Police officers could be seen in the library on Tuesday, while about 100 demonstrators stood outside with posters.

Rebecca Suton, who was there with a friend, told the PA news agency that her presence was “important”.

She said: “Transgender rights are something that people have been fighting for for so many years, and to think that there are still people who organize such meetings only makes it harder.

“I support transgender rights and it is important that everyone supports this. Transgender people already have it hard enough without constantly protesting to defend themselves and their rights in front of people who do not understand them.

“We should all support them”

Scottish police confirmed that no arrests were made during the protest.

Organizers of the meeting said they wanted to “break the silence” around how children are taught about gender and discuss their concerns about pressure on schools to remove single-sex restrooms.

The Scottish government has become the “first country in the world” to add LGBT inclusive education to the curriculum in September 2021.

According to the GoFundMe page, the Feminist Fundraisers campaign to raise £600 for collateral has secured £954.

“We are a small group of local residents who just want to ensure an open discussion without intimidation or threats,” they said.

“But we were faced with a determined campaign to stop the discussion and ban the meeting.”

Council leader Cammy Day said: “When considering whether any proposed event should take place, we are confident that everyone has the right to freedom of expression – but equally it must be done within the law and in accordance with the relevant public safety requirements .

“This includes meeting attendees, council staff, potential protesters, library users and the wider community.”

Edinburgh’s Lighthouse Bookshop called the event “transphobic” and said in a statement: “Although the event is framed in the language of concern and free speech, it stems from bigotry and is intended to fuel and support anti-trans sentiment.

“Scratch the surface, and it’s perfectly clear that the main goal of the organizers is to undermine progress on LGBTQ+ integration in schools and transgender equality and solidarity more broadly.”


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