I who may well be...

Musings from the perspective of a human being who may well be not locatable completely within the usual categories of male or female or gay or straight or transsexual or intersexed or exploiter or exploited or supplier or consumer or performer or spectator.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Sex-on-premises venue accused of discrimination

This post also appears on Eunuch Love, my more personal blog, but it is appropriate to both, being about my love life (that blog), and my public/political life (this blog), for the two intersect when the police are called and the law is broken by those who want to keep androgyny or gender ambiguity away from their preciously gendered spaces.

from http://www.evolutionpublishing.com.au/sxnews/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=682&Itemid=41

This week's SX news weekly (Sydney gay paper)

Thursday, 03 August 2006
Sex-on-premises venue accused of discrimination
Transgender activist Norrie May-Welby (pictured) has lodged a complaint with the Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW (ADB) against sex-on-premises club The Pleasure Chest on George Street in the city after s/he was refused entry to the venue’s cruise lounge on the grounds she was “not a man”.

Police were called to the scene on Sunday after May-Welby, who identifies as “androgynous, not a man, not a woman, a man and a woman”, refused to leave the premises.

“A staff member told me [the cruise lounge] is a men-only area,” May-Welby told SX. “I told him this was a breach of the Anti-Discrimination Act of NSW. He wouldn’t let me in and asked if I would leave. I said I was not leaving. The staff member called the manager, who turned up after about an hour with three armed police.”

After discussion with police officers, May-Welby was eventually admitted to the cruise lounge. “The police pressured the manager to let me in,” May-Welby said. “I told them the law is being broken every minute I’m not allowed in there; it’s being broken every second I’m being treated differently to anyone who’s not considered a man.” [Blog editorial note: that sentence works better if the "not" is dropped]

Under NSW law, a venue must gain an exemption from the ADB if it wishes to operate a single-sex policy. May-Welby said s/he expects The Pleasure Chest, which currently does not have such an exemption, to apply for one, but urged the GLBTI community and the ADB to oppose this. “Trannies should be allowed to go somewhere too,” s/he said. “Who’s got the right to decide what I am?”

A spokesperson for The Pleasure Chest told SX it was investigating the matter at press time.


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