Myself in Public

My BBC Radio York Interview 07-09-2017

This link will let you listen to an audio recording of this interview. It will play automatically.

It was with Jonathan Cowap on the morning programme for "lively discussion and debate on the issues of the day". 9am to Noon.


Live radio nerves got the better of me at the start, forgetting his name and starting another, stopping immediately which threw me more until Jonathon asked his first question. I did send a direct message via Twitter with my apologies. You know the subject beforehand but not the questions.


On 6th September, 2017 newspapers were writing articles about Prior School, Lewes East Sussex. Here is a link to the article on the BBC web site. Daily Telegraph 06-09-17  or The Guardian 06-09-17. There were many other articles in other papers.


Taken from the BBC website article:

Priory School in Lewes, East Sussex, made the change after "concerns" raised over the length of skirts, and catering for a handful of transgender pupils. Starting this autumn term, all new students must wear trousers, while returning students have the option to wear either trousers or skirts. Head teacher Tony Smith said the move addresses "inequality and decency".

I was contacted directly by BBC Radio York to ask if I would like to speak on the issue and gender neutral clothing being a man who chooses to wear skirts. Three or four others called in during the show with a couple of emails read out. One email from a traditionalist was adamanant skirts are for girls and trousers for boys. One caller said that for the development of girls and health and safety, girls should only wear trousers but acknowledged choice if the student wanted even including the boys but with the boys she did added that they would only experience hinderance in their development. All the others just could not understand why clothing cannot be treated as clothing and drop labels and expectations on both genders. One was the Chief Exeutive of MermaidsUK and I have put her interview on a separate page on this section of my site.

Personally I do not think skirts should be banned. Yes have a prescribed minimum length of skirt due to nature of establishment if the school feels that the skirt length is getting too short and to educate that some things are not always possible, but this now prohibits any female student who prefers a skirt to trousers. It denies them a choice. It also raises one of my many questions on gender neutral clothing why does any prescribed gender neutral clothing have to be masculine based only. Gender neutral clothing is and can only be successful when all clothing is open to both genders. If girls find skirts a hindrance to their development at school, eg activities on the playground or their preferred appearance away from gender prescribed expectations, they can choose trousers. At the end of the day it is simply down to choice, a choice that does no physical harm to anyone else. It is a choice that should be available to both genders.


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