Mr and Mrs to be dropped in favour of transexuals


Brighton, where Mr or Mrs may be banned from official terms

Friday October 26,2012
By Anil Dawar

TOWN hall chiefs are considering scrapping the use of Mr and Mrs on forms so transsexuals are not faced with having to make a choice.

All personal titles could be scrapped from official paperwork under a plan being studied by Brighton & Hove City Council.

But Tory councillor Dawn Barrett said: “It’s ludicrous and shows a complete lack of respect. How are they going to address letters properly? This is political correctness gone too far.”

The recommendation to scrap Mr and Mrs is to be put to the council for approval in December. It follows an investigation into problems faced by the council’s transsexual community, carried out by its specially convened Trans Equality Scrutiny Panel.

The panel states that while people can tick the “other” category when it comes to titles such as Mr and Mrs, there are “no options for non-binary/genderqueer people”. It calls for “no honorifics” and says people should reveal their gender “only if needed”.

The panel was chaired by deputy council leader Phelim MacCafferty, of the Green Party. He said: “Trans people aren’t necessarily male or female and sometimes they don’t want to be defined by their gender. Putting Mr and Mrs on a form is useless. We should at least examine the issue.”
Being called Mr or Mrs forces me to choose between genders

Local activist Steph Scott said the proposal would raise awareness that gender is not only male or female, adding: “Being called Mr or Mrs forces me to choose between genders. It’s assuming people live in a binary world where you’re either one thing or another and it pigeonholes people.”

Robert Oxley, of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “There are better things the council can do that will actually help residents instead of wasting money trying to abolish Mr and Mrs.

“This speaks of skewed and out-of-touch priorities of a council more concerned about labels than what it delivers for local taxpayers.”

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