*** This is an urgent action for TODAY! We hope everyone, male and female, will join in – we’re aiming for a high number of people all sending emails. ***
The CTEEA committee will take evidence from the National Records of Scotland (NRS) in Parliament this Thursday, 12th September 2019.
We are concerned that, despite Parliament voting unanimously for a binary sex question in the census (male and female only, with no “other” option), the NRS is still testing for the guidance to advise answering on the basis of self-identification. If this were to go ahead as the final guidance it will mean that the census returns inaccurate information regarding the protected characteristic “sex”, and duplicate and confusing information on “gender identity” (as there will also be a voluntary question on this).
Following a three day “protest” Scottish Trans Alliance are now lobbying the Government aggressively, calling for self-id of sex in the census and seeking one-to-one meetings with all members of the CTEEA committee.
It is vital that we counteract the pressure that members of the committee are under and send a strong message on the importance of the collection of accurate data on sex. To that end, we request that you, your family and friends, all send an email to each of the committee members before Thursday.
The email addresses of the CTEEA committee members are:
I am writing to you ahead of the meeting of the CTEEA committee on Thursday to express concern over the guidance for the census possibly advising that the sex question is answered on the basis of self-identification, rather than that recorded on a person’s birth certificate.
Sex is a protected characteristic in the Equality Act and it is imperative that the census records the same biological information on a population basis in order to:
– protect continuity in the longest running population data source;
– set a high-quality precedent which is likely to be copied in other surveys;
– provide accurate information for health care provision; and
– provide accurate information on which to monitor sex inequalities.
I support the inclusion of a voluntary question on gender identity as it is also important to gain accurate information about this section of our population. It is however, futile to turn the sex question into an additional gender identity question and lose important information about sex in the process.
Women still face many structural inequalities in this country and unless we have fundamental information about this group it is impossible to address sex discrimination.
Additional reading: MBM Statement on the 2021 census and Why Exactly is the Census Sex Question to be Changed to one about Gender.