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Cardiff Labour council candidate stands by anti-trans comments despite criticism

Cardiff Labour council candidate stands by anti-trans comments despite criticism

A Cardiff Labour council candidate has come under fire after voicing her views on gender identity. Sue Lent, a Labour council candidate for Plasnewydd, posted to her public Facebook page suggesting that trans people are “brainwashed.”

Despite Welsh Labour announcing a move to ban conversion therapy for LGBT+ people in Wales just days ago and the party’s LGBT+ Action Plan, Ms Lent has spoke openly in opposition of the plan. In a protest organised by Merched Cymru in 2021, Ms Lent took to the microphone to voice her concerns. The group she spoke at outside the Senedd campaigns against letting trans women use women’s facilities and participate in women’s sports.

In 2014, Ms Lent was voted in as Deputy Leader of Cardiff Council and is also a Local Authority Governor for two primary schools in Cardiff – Roath Park and the Howardian. She also sits on Cardiff Council’s Community & Adult Services Scrutiny Committee, giving guidance on care for children.

Read More: ‘Wales considers seeking new powers for an entire ban on conversion therapy’

When questioned about her comments and views, Ms Lent told WalesOnline she found the topic of trans children “difficult” and said that people experiencing gender dysphoria “need counselling”, despite NHS Wales stating that they support the banning of therapy to change somebody’s gender and sexuality.

“My main concern is the aspect of children being influenced to think that they’ve got something called a gender identity, which was an unheard of concept until fairly recently,” she explained.

“I have a sex, I don’t have a gender identity. I think the whole idea of gender identity is very regressive. We’re now seeing a whole generation of a whole group of girls who have damaged their bodies, and then are regretting it. Because as teenagers they’ve been led to believe that because they like their hair short or they’ve been disturbed by puberty or whatever that therefore, they’re really boys.

“Many of these girls are actually lesbians, but they’ve been made to think that possibly, they’re actually boys. It’s very anti lesbian as well. The whole gender ideology is, in the end, quite homophobic. I have every sympathy with anybody who’s got gender dysphoria, [and I] think they need counselling.”

When questioned about her Facebook post that suggested that trans people were “brainwashed”, Ms Lent said she didn’t use the word brainwashed, despite evidence showing she did post that online.



Ms Lent posted to her Facebook page suggesting transgender people were brainwashed




A spokesperson for Glitter Cymru, an LGBT+ charity for BAME people in Cardiff, said to The National: “We were shocked when we saw the evidence regarding Sue Lent and her activity- which appears to be extensive and openly aggressive.

“The fact that this is happening so close to the election will definitely impact people’s votes, and rightfully so. As LGBTQ activists and advocates for social justice, it’s our responsibility to come together, make the community feel empowered and ensure that trans exclusive voices are deplatformed.

“It’s a shame that Lent’s activity hit the news, as it was a brilliant day for trans rights in Wales – Hannah Blythyn AM announced that Wales will be looking to ban conversion therapy unilaterally for the LGBTQ community. This is a win that we have been heavily involved in. The LGBTQ community in Wales is as strong as ever. We look after our own, we co-ordinate, and we act quickly.”

Lisa Power, seasoned activist and co-founder of LGBT+ charity Stonewall UK, described Ms Lent’s comments as “nonsense.”

“While it’s amusing to have straight women tell me what I should think as a lifelong lesbian, it’s nonsense to try and pit trans people against lesbians. Some of my best friends over the decades have been both. The majority of women of all sexualities in the UK support trans people. Also, there’s no such things as ‘gender ideology’, only some human beings trying to live mostly ordinary lives despite a mountain of unreasonable hatred.”

Welsh Labour was contacted for comment regarding Ms Lent’s comments.

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