Case study 26: Women’s rights campaigner ordered to remove posters from her front door

(Statement from CPN recipient). ‘For several years I have been displaying a variety of posters on my front door, which is immediately adjacent to a popular pedestrian passageway and part of the Thames riverside path in London. These posters are from previously published and reputable sources such as the campaign group Sex Matters.

I am a Women’s Rights campaigner. I am concerned with the protected characteristic of sex in the Equality Act 2010. I am trying to explain to the public that they are right to be concerned about the intrusion of men into women’s single-sex spaces, and the epidemic of girls trying to ‘identify’ as boys and undergoing surgery such as mastectomies.

The local police have come to look at my door a few times over the past 2-3 years and have confirmed that I am not breaking any law on free speech or ‘hate crime’. The posters and the plastic sheet cover have been attacked frequently by trans radical activists. These attacks have decreased in recent months. Indeed, I have had supportive members of the public ringing my door bell and congratulating me for providing a ‘gender critical’ viewpoint.

Now the council says that it has received a complaint about the posters via its ‘Hate Crime Mailbox’, and has issued me with a Community Protection Notice. The CPN states that ‘Your actions towards sexual orientation and displaying pictures that do not belong to you is a breach of freedom of speech and hate speech’, and ‘Your persistent and continuing conduct is having a detrimental effect on the public and the LGBT Community’.

The CPN orders me to ‘remove the offensive posters immediately without delay’ and ‘not to erect posters that offend the public and influence danger to the public’ (sic).

The photo of mastectomy scars is a still from a documentary on YouTube which has been viewed thousands of times. The photo has been re-published on Twitter many times.

I think that the Council wants to use S43 of Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 because they can’t find more specific legislation to curtail my free speech. I know that they disagree with my views on sex and ‘gender’. I am sure that they want to silence me.

For years, I have had posters on my door about the running down of the local hospital and saying that the NHS is being privatised, but the council never said anything about those. Now they disagree with me they are trying to silence me.

I am a 68-year old mother of two adult children, who no longer live with me. I am divorced and now widowed. I am a home owner and secretary of the council-owned park next to my house.

They say that I am committing ‘hate speech’, but I am not attacking anyone, and I am not attacking gays or lesbians or trans people. I strongly dispute that my conduct is having a detrimental effect on the public and the LGBT ‘community’. There isn’t one, but several LGBT ‘communities’.

Some of the public appreciate my posters. There is no inflammatory language and all materials are factual or from published sources.

I do not want to be silenced and I do not want to be fined. I do not want a criminal conviction. I intend to appeal this notice.’