A great outcome has been achieved for the Transgender Community and its Allies earlier this year, settling a complaint against The Australian with the Anti-Discrimination Board.
The basis of the complaint was that an article published under The Australian’s ‘Gender Issues’ column incited serious contempt for transgender people. Miss Wolfgramme would like to thank The Australian for: “acknowledging the community stress and distress their articles may have caused and their grace in deciding to publicly acknowledge that and take action to help change the narrative.
Following conciliation, The Australian agreed to both amend the headline of the article and publish an Editor’s note to the online article. This is a strong result for the transgender community. It not only provides necessary context to the article’s commentary, but importantly acknowledges the harm the transgender community and its Allies consider the article caused. The outcome of the complaint provides a clear reminder that words and the context in which they are used matters. The significant impact felt by the transgender community and their experience of minority stress cannot be overstated.
The Editor’s note is published as follows: “The original version of this article carried the headline “Health chiefs can’t ignore ‘global epidemic’ of transgender teens”, but following concerns raised by Miss Katherine Wolfgramme on behalf of the transgender community and its Allies, who considered the article could cause harm to the transgender community, The Australian has chosen to amend the headline to read, “Health chiefs can’t ignore ‘global epidemic’ of transgender teens, inquiry told” to clarify the headline was reporting on submissions to a Queensland Parliamentary Inquiry.”
Miss Wolfgramme would like to thank The Australian for: “acknowledging the community stress and distress their articles may have caused and their grace in deciding to publicly acknowledge that and take action to help change the narrative.
Miss Wolfgramme, a contributor to SAGE’s Life Over Suicide Project, award winning trans advocate and gender diversity consultant, believes strongly in educating the wider community on the issues transgender people face and raising awareness of the distress such publications cause.
As She recalled: “I transitioned over thirty years ago when there were no rights for my community. I and other trans advocates strive to help pave the way for future generations to be happy without persecution – as my trans elders and trans ancestors strove to pave the way for us now. None of these things can be achieved without stronger allies, in the legal and political and corporate arena who stand in front of us when we cannot speak, stand beside us when we cannot be brave and stand behind us to give us a platform so our voices can be heard; and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for how far we have come and continue to go.”
“Slowly, slowly with each generation we are all learning to accept each other’s differences more kindly and it is my hope that one day all media outlets will learn to be more respectful and kind towards people of all genders and all diversities.”