A controversial parody of Bristol LGBT+ Society’s Transgender Awareness Week poster has been posted near the Wills Memorial Building toilets.
The poster has been condemned as transphobic and caused outrage among members of Bristol University Feminist Society and UBU LGBT+ Society.
The offensive poster tells women to ‘ignore the fact that men including transgender males rape women every 9 minutes’.
It also asks women to ‘kindly surrender your boundaries’, states ‘don’t worry about it, men know better than you’ and ends with a sarcastic hashtag ‘#whataboutthemenz’.
The poster parodies the highly successful poster campaign by UBU LGBT+ Society, which aimed to increase understanding and remove stigma surrounding transgender people.
Speaking to Epigram UBU Equality, Liberation and Access Officer Alice Phillips stated: ‘I’m extremely disturbed by the appearance of this poster in the Wills Memorial building. There is absolutely no place for transphobia at the University of Bristol and as a Union we’re going to be doing everything we can to find out where this has come from.
‘Security services are going to be extra vigilant on their patrols and are going to be taking down any posters they see.’
The poster has been condemned by many as ‘sickening’ and ‘vile’ with Bristol University Feminist Society President Hattie Stamp stating: ‘I think it’s a really hateful thing to do, its intention is to make trans people feel unsafe at Uni by calling them transgender males (when they self-identify as a woman) and completely dismisses their experiences and incites discrimination.’
UBU LGBT+ Society President Jamie Cross told Epigram: ‘I think that whoever has parodied the poster has, in every way, misinterpreted the campaign. In fact I think that anyone who believes that we have not considered the need for safety for all self-identifying women in public bathrooms has also misinterpreted what we were trying to achieve with the original poster.
‘I’m both angry and hurt that this may have been put up by a student at the university.’
The poster is attributed to University of Bristol ‘MENZ+ Society’, which is not a real society at the University. Some members of Bristol University Feminist Society have speculated that ‘TERFs’, or ‘Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminists’, may have created the poster, although no one has yet claimed responsibility.
UBU provides a Just Ask Advice service for anyone who may feel affected.