Tuesday, January 24, 2023

The government faces a backlash over a tweet about cervical screening that excludes “women”.

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The tweet – which has now been seen more than three million times – was one of several shared on the government’s official account to encourage people to get a swab.

It read: “If you are a transgender male, gender non-conforming person or woman assigned at birth and have a cervix, you can book your free cervical screening today.”

The contribution functions Vic Tanner Davya transgender man with a cervix who runs the Channel Islands equality organization Liberate.

Of Jersey’s 103,000 residents, few residents are Twitter users, so tweets posted to the @GovJersey account typically only get a few thousand views.

However, many others on social media took offense at the omission of the word “women” from the tweet.

BBC Women’s Hour presenter Jenni Murray said: “You could have mentioned women, couldn’t you? We have to stop this ridiculous determination to wipe ourselves out.”

Olympian Sharron Davies wrote: “Sorry… the only word left out is ‘woman’. What the hell is going on?

But some defended the message, including Guardian columnist Owen Jones. He wrote: “The Jersey Government has repeatedly run ads targeting women to get cervical cancer screening tests.

“When they aimed one at trans people, all the anti-trans activists piled on it.

“So anti-trans activists say they don’t want trans people to get targeted health messages.”

The viral post quickly went beyond social media and became the topic of discussion for rolling news channel GB News.

It’s not the first time Channel Islands governments have faced a backlash over the wording of a cervical cancer screening campaign.

2021, guernsey‘s health service sparked outrage after the invitation “Anyone With a Cervix” to be tested.

Jersey’s director of public health, Professor Peter Bradley, addressed the outrage. He says the tweet is part of a series of scheduled posts with an important message:

“This post has encountered criticism regarding the terminology used to describe those eligible for screening.

“This particular post was aimed at the transgender community, gender non-conforming individuals and those assigned at birth to a female who may not identify as such and who are also at risk for cervical cancer.

“The inclusive campaign, which includes four local speakers, three women and one transgender man, invites all eligible islanders to attend their cervical cancer screening appointments.”

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