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Thursday, November 17, 2005

Transsexual Forced To Resign From Gay Post

Rainbow Network

A Brighton transsexual has claimed he was forced to resign from his job as co-ordinator of a gay safety forum because of sexual discrimination.

During an employment tribunal Andy Baldwin accused members of Brighton and Hove City Council, and prominent members of the city's gay community, of transphobia.

According to The Argus, the tribunal was told that the council was steeped in a culture of bigotry and discrimination against transsexuals.

Baldwin told the tribunal that he had become the subject of a whispering campaign by his line manager Linda Beanlands, the council's community safety manager, and Anthea Ballam, who chaired the safety forum.

"Anthea Ballam had been calling me objectionable and incompetent. I was told she said she would rather be dead than let me carry on as co-ordinator," Baldwin said.

The tribunal heard that Baldwin had recorded a conversation between a friend and David Miller, who had taken over as chairman of the now-defunct safety forum, in which Miller allegedly said, "I do not think that being treated as a transsexual can be regarded as normal."

Baldwin’s friend told him that, "In his eyes, I was nothing more than a man dressed up as a woman."

Baldwin claims he was forced to resign in January 2003 after "resistance, disinterest, inaction and bigotry."

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