Transgender groups have ‘too much say’ on hate crime laws and consultation on expanding them risks being ‘unbalanced’, former Old Bailey judge says

May 4, 2021 by

by William Cole, Mailonline:

A former top judge has claimed transgender groups are having too much say over hate crime laws that could cause freedom of speech to ‘suffer’.

Charles Wide, a retired Old Bailey judge, has said only an ‘limited range’ of views was being sought out to advise on a possible expansion of legislation.

The government currently looking at expanding hate crimes, and the Law Commission is consulting on whether misogyny, age, sex workers, homelessness, and some subcultures should become protected groups.

But the judge fears the Commission’s over reliance on certain campaign groups has seen it move away from its non-political brief to draw on ‘contentious and controversial sociological theories’.

Writing for the think tank Policy Exchange, he said: ‘No adequate thought seems to have been given to the difficulty of reaching beyond a limited range of academics and organisations to the full variety of academic voices, organisations, commentators and members of the public who have no organisation to speak for them.’

He singled out LGBT campaigners Stonewall, saying the Commission was treating them more like ‘a consultant than consultee’.

‘Views which contest what are presented as orthodoxies were neither sought nor expressed.’

According to the Daily Telegraph, the Commission has already backed down on one proposal for offensive family dinner table comments to be classified as a hate crime.

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