Mark Latham’s School ‘Information Pack’ Is Blatant Anti-Trans Propaganda

Call it what it is.

mark latham

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We regret to inform you that Mark Latham is back on his hateful bullshit. This time, he’s decided to launch an anti-transgender “information pack”, which will be sent out to schools across NSW.

Latham launched the “information” pack, produced by the anti-LGBTIQ lobby group Binary Australia, at NSW Parliament last night. The resource he launched is called the “Anti-PC P&C Pack”, a fairly confusing name that could have been avoided by calling it what it is: anti-trans propaganda and unnecessary scaremongering.

The pack will be sent to at least 500 P&C associations at schools across NSW, and both Latham and Binary Australia have described it as “a great resource in the fight against radical transgender indoctrination in schools”.

It contains anti-transgender propaganda, and encourages parents to contact schools to ask questions about which toilets transgender students are allowed to use, where transgender children sleep on school camps, and whether “biological males can participate as females” in school sports.

The pack also encourages parents to view anti-bullying initiatives as transgender “indoctrination programs”, suggesting that “anti-bullying” is simply a “politically correct code word”. This is untrue. Anti-bullying programs, including anti-bullying programs with a focus on the needs of LGBTIQ students, are exactly what it says on the tin: anti-bullying programs, intended to protect children from harm.

These programs are necessary and can be life-saving. Transgender children and teens face extraordinarily high levels of mental illness and suicide risk relative to the general population, and a supportive school environment is often key in alleviating that risk.

We’ve also written before about how programs supporting transgender kids in schools do not target or even really impact students who are not transgender. There is no reason for parents to be concerned about how school policies accommodating the needs of other students will affect their children.

NSW Gave Mark Latham A Platform. It’s Time His Supporters Are Held To Account.

It would be lovely to simply ignore Mark Latham’s comments on this issue, but that is unfortunately no longer an option. In March of this year, NSW granted Latham a significant platform by electing him to Parliament, where he will remain for an eight year term.

It’s time Latham’s supporters are held to account for the dangerous views he is spreading. Last night, those supporters included a number of other NSW MPs. Your local MP might be among them.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the Binary Australia P&C packs are supported by NSW Finance Minister Damien Tudehope, who had planned to be at the launch but was unavailable. Minister for Corrections Anthony Roberts, and Liberal MPs Tanya Davies and Matthew Mason-Cox were also reportedly in attendance.

Media coverage of the event has also been disappointing, with the Sydney Morning Herald opting to quote incorrect and misleading claims (for instance, Binary Australia director Kirralee Smith’s claim that “radical gender activists” are “forcing many to remain silent as unreasonable and unsafe practices are implemented”) without fact-checking or qualifying these claims.

We need to do better than this. Read up on what support services for transgender students actually entail, educate yourself about the mental health challenges faced by LGBTIQ youth in Australia, and consider sharing this information with your local MPs, P&C groups, and even Latham and Binary Australia supporters. When young people’s lives, health and wellbeing hang in the balance, it’s too important not to.