Dr #105 Nicola Williams: Fair Play for Women - why sex-based policies matter for women's sport
Fair Play for Women is a campaigning and consultancy group which raises awareness, provides evidence and analysis, and supports policy-makers to protect the rights of women and girls in the UK.
Their aim is to facilitate the much-needed factual discussion about the need for sex-based policies for women and to provide policy makers with the guidance they need for evidence-based policy making that is fair for all. Fair Play for Women has earned a reputation, amongst the general public, policy makers, politicians and the media, for calm, rational, fact-checked, accurate information, statistics, and good-faith debate.
Fair Play for Women Guiding Principles
1) Biological sex exists, and in certain situations it is vitally important – objective truths are not bigoted or transphobic.
2) Sexism exists, it is endemic, and women and girls face structural inequality, male physical and sexual violence, harassment, reproductive injustice, unequal pay and so on precisely because they are members of the female sex.
3) Gender (or culturally determined roles, beliefs, and stereotypes) is neither natural nor innate but a socially constructed hierarchy borne of the dominant order that varies over time and between cultures; it is harmful to men and boys, but oppressive to women and girls. Sex and gender are not the same and must not be conflated.
4) Women and girls have a right to terms that are necessarily exclusive so that they can accurately name themselves and the injustice they suffer; a right to organise as a sex to address this injustice; and a right, in a democracy, to laws (and discussion of those laws) that protect them as a sex from this injustice.
5) Whilst we oppose all forms of bigotry and discrimination, trans rights do not exist in isolation and they must not come at the expense of another extremely vulnerable and disadvantaged group: women and girls.
FiLiA Spokeswoman Raquel Rosario Sánchez spoke with Dr Nicola Williams, the Director of Fair Play for Women. Dr Williams is a research scientist specialising in human biology. She has held a number of senior scientific positions within the pharmaceutical industry. She is now dedicated to her full-time voluntary role as campaign director and public spokeswoman for Fair Play for Women.
Dr Williams has an excellent working knowledge of the laws designed to protect women and the transgender community. As a professional scientist, she also offers a critical and informed view of current research necessary for evidence-based policy development.
You can also support the vital work of Fair Play for Women by donating to their Crowdfunding page.