Government Bans The Term "Pregnant Women", Asks People To Use The Term "Pregnant People" To Include Transgender People

In a move to extend transgender rights, the Government has said that the term "pregnant woman" should not be used in a United Nations treaty as it excludes transgender people.

This statement is in the UK’s submission on amendments to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The treaty, to which Britain has been a signatory since 1976, upholds individuals’ rights.

It says a "pregnant woman" must be protected, including not being subject to the death penalty.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office opposes the term "pregnant woman" used in the treaty because it may "exclude transgender people who have given birth". The aim is to ensure that females who identify as male but have kept their female sex organs, and can conceive, are covered. 

But this latest move to extend transgender rights has angered some feminists who call it "making women unmentionable". 

Feminist writer Sarah Ditum said: "This isn’t inclusion. This is making women unmentionable. Having a female body and knowing what that means for reproduction doesn’t make you 'exclusionary'. Forcing us to decorously scrub out any reference to our sex on pain of being called bigots is an insult."

Two weeks ago the Office for National Statistics suggested making it voluntary for people to state their gender on the census because it "discriminates" against transpeople. The proposal provoked uproar with claims that it would make it impossible to plan services for women. Feminist Germaine Greer is one of those who was against it. She said it denied women’s "right to exist".

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