Blog

Letter to Leader of Lancaster City Council regarding the no-platforming of Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown

We’ve written to the Leader of Lancaster City Council urging her to reconsider the cancellation of Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown’s forthcoming performance in Morecambe. If some people find his humour offensive, they should just stay at home. No one is forcing them to buy a ticket.

Letter to the Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police about The Lady of Heaven

We’ve written to four chief constables about their failure to uphold people’s right to see The Lady of Heaven. We’re publishing one of them here – to the Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police. The others we’ve written to are the chief constables of South Yorkshire Police, West Midlands Police and Greater Manchester Police.

Letter to the Metropolitan Police concerning the arrest of Hatun Tash

Hatun Tash, the evangelical Christian preacher and member of the Free Speech Union, was arrested at Speakers’ Corner on Sunday, the third time she’s been arrested in two years. She was dragged off by a group of police officers, taken to Charing Cross police station, strip searched, interviewed, kept overnight in a cell and then released without charge. To cap it all, the day she was released – Monday, 27th June – was the 150th anniversary of Speakers’ Corner. We have written to the Acting Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Stephen House, asking him to justify this appalling treatment and, if he cannot, to apologise to Hatun.

Letter to Nadim Zahawi MP and Michelle Donelan MP thanking them for introducing two vital amendments we campaigned for to the Higher Education Bill

We’ve written to the Education Secretary and the Universities Minister to thank them for introducing two amendments that we campaigned for – removing the caveat “within their field of expertise” from Clause 1, so the new free speech protections apply to academics regardless of whether their speaking or writing about something within their field of expertise or not, and making it harder for “security costs” to be cited by universities or student unions to justify no-platforming a controversial speaker.

Below you can read our original letter and the reply we received from the Rt Hon. James Cleverly MP.

Letter to the CEO of Cineworld concerning his decision to cancel The Lady of Heaven

We’ve written to Moshe Greidinger, CEO of Cineworld, about his decision to cancel all showings of The Lady of Heaven in response to protests from a small group of intolerant Islamic extremists. We have pointed out that this sets a dangerous precedent – will he grant the same veto power to far right extremists in future? – and asked him to reconsider his decision.

Letter to the Vice Chancellor of Loughborough University about the expulsion of Dr Jon Pike from a seminar for expressing gender critical views

We’ve written to the Vice-Chancellor of Loughborough University, Professor Nick Jennings, after our member, Dr Jon Pike of the Open University, was removed from a seminar on ‘trans inclusion in women’s sport’ for asking questions about the fairness of allowing biological men to compete against female athletes. Dr Pike is a world-leading expert in this area and his expertise has been sought by numerous international sports bodies. We consider this to be a failure of the University to uphold its obligations to academic freedom and freedom of speech, and an act of discrimination against Dr Pike on the grounds of his gender critical beliefs.

Letter to the Vice Chancellor of Aberdeen about the no-platforming of Alex Salmond

We’ve written to Professor George Boyne, the Principal and Vice Chancellor of the University of Aberdeen, about the no-platforming of Alex Salmond on 22nd April. Mr Salmond had been invited to speak at the Aberdeen University Student Golf Club, but the invitation was rescinded after student activists objected that because Mr Salmond is opposed to Scotland’s Gender Recognition Reform Bill – which will make it easier for trans people to change their legal gender – his presence on campus would make trans students feel unsafe. We believe no-platforming Mr Salmond was contrary to Scottish law, contrary to the University of Aberdeen’s own free speech policy and a breach of his right to freedom of expression under the European Convention on Human Rights.

Letter objecting to the Home Office asking its staff to state their pronouns in email signatures

We’ve written to Matthew Rycroft CBE, the Permanent Secretary at the Home Office, to complain about a directive to Home Office staff to include their pronouns in their email signatures. We are concerned that this instruction, which appears to be mandatory, is a form of compelled speech that violates the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion and the right to free speech (Articles 9 and 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights), and is a breach of the Equality Act 2010.

Letter to the Chief Executive of Great Ormond Street Hospital about the no-platforming of Helen Joyce

We’ve written to the Chief Executive of Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust asking him to apologise to the author and journalist Helen Joyce after she was no-platformed at a one-day conference for trainee NHS psychiatrists about the treatment of adolescents with gender dysphoria. Dr Joyce was due to speak on one of the panels, but was disinvited after transactivists who were due to appear at the conference threatened to withdraw if she was allowed to speak. Dr Joyce is the author of Trans: When Ideology Meets Reality, a Sunday Times bestseller.

Below, you can read our original letter and the reply we received from Dr Anna Ferrant, Company Secretary for Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust.