Women's safety being sidelined in push for gender self-identity freedom, Tory MP warns

Jackie Doyle-Price said the rights of women were too often lost in the debate

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Women's safety is being sidelined in the push towards allowing greater freedom on gender self-identity, a Tory MP has claimed.

Jackie Doyle-Price said the rights of women were too often lost in the debate, which has come back into sharp focus this week following Rishi Sunak’s decision to block Scottish legislation related to the issue.

Speaking to GB News, Ms Doyle-Price, the Tory MP for Thurrock, said she was particularly concerned about the risks posed to female prisoners.

She told Gloria Meets: “There are risk assessments in terms of who's allocated to a women's prison. But the difficulty for me is that when they're making that risk assessment, it is the risks pertaining to that individual who has chosen to self-identify as a woman.

Jackie Doyle-Price says she is concerned about the safety of female prisoners
Jackie Doyle-Price says she is concerned about the safety of female prisoners

“That's the prism through which it's addressed, not the potential risks to the women in the prison to whom they're joining.

“There was a recent sexual assault where the person had been risk assessed but the person still went on to cause issues within that facility. We've just got to get all this right. We need to centre women at the heart of this debate really.

“We should be kind to people, absolutely. We should allow people to live as they wish. But where that poses a risk to women, then that needs to be properly managed.”

Suggesting the rights of women had been sidelined she continued: “I think the whole debate about self identification isn't centring on women enough. There is a conflict of rights here, and we need to have tools for managing that.

“At the moment it's too much about rhetoric, and talk of rights. Women come second place in all of these things. It's centring the men who are choosing to identify as women and not the women themselves.”

The Tory MP says she was deeply concerned about the number of women remaining at risk of exploitation
The Tory MP says she was deeply concerned about the number of women remaining at risk of exploitation

Ms Doyle Price also said she was deeply concerned about the continued number of women remaining at risk of exploitation across the country.

She said: “It was very striking when Wayne Couzens was arrested and convicted for murder and abduction. That absolutely changed the game. It made people wake up and realise that anyone could be a victim. But the truth is prostitutes disappear every week and no one pays a blind bit of notice.

“Violence against women and girls is never acceptable. And women don't choose to go into sex work, it's something that happens to vulnerable women.

“It happens to women who often are persuaded to, or are coerced into doing it by men who live off them. And I think we need to properly start tackling these issues. Because at the moment, it’s too easy to look the other way when these things happen. Because if it doesn't affect you, if you've got your nice house and everything's happy with you, it's easy to ignore what's happening around the corner.

Jackie Doyle-Price is critical of the lack of diversity in British politics
Jackie Doyle-Price is critical of the lack of diversity in British politics

“I'm afraid there are still too many vulnerable women who are being exploited by men and that's something we need to tackle.”

Meanwhile Ms Doyle Price, who grew up in a council house in Sheffield to working-class parents has hit out at the lack of diversity in British politics - and said Labour were now more Metropolitan than the Tories.

She said: “Parliament should really reflect the composition of British society and I'm afraid for too long it's been full of white, male, middle class lawyers. We need a more diverse set of voices.

“I think increasingly the Conservative Party is having a much broader based set of voices and, if anything, the Labour Party is becoming more and more metropolitan middle class. “

Asked whether she felt her working class roots had held her back she added: “I think it holds you back generally in society, in truth.

"Because our society works for the pointy elbowed middle classes. I would say that my class has probably held me back more than my sex, in truth.

"But again, I think the more that we are seen to be sort of striking through those glass ceilings, the more we can take people up with us. And ultimately it should be for everyone to aim high and become the best that they can be. That’s real social mobility.”

*THE FULL INTERVIEW IS BROADCAST ON GLORIA MEETS AT 6PM ON SUNDAY ON GB NEWS