LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - As British politicians wrestle with Brexit, Britain’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community - like others around the world - is grappling with a potential split of its own.
Can the coalition of allies, which traces its roots back to the early days of gay liberation in the 1960s, survive in its current form?
Caught in the crossfire between trans activists and feminists over the nature of what it is to be a woman, calls for a break-up of the longstanding LGBT+ alliance back to its constituent elements are starting to emerge.
At the heart of the increasingly toxic debate is whether trans rights are compatible with those of other women, particularly in terms of access to single-sex spaces, such as rape crisis centers or women’s refuges.
On one side, trans campaigners say that transgender women are women and deserve equal access. On the other, some feminists and lesbians disagree, making the distinction between natal and trans women.
The result has been a progressively poisonous row that threatens to tear the LGBT+ community apart.