‘The issue is modesty’: Smith says she would not restrict transgender women from female spaces

During her speech at the Canada Strong and Free Conference, Smith said the law won't ban transgender women from female spaces.

Alberta Premier Danielle Smith says “modesty” is part of the issue around transgender women in female-only spaces, but that she would not restrict them from entering.

She said this in a Q&A with True North radio host Andrew Lawton following a speech at the Canada Strong and Free conference in Ottawa on Friday. This also comes after she tabled a bill that would stop Alberta cities from negotiating deals directly with the federal government

Lawton asked if the upcoming legislation would restrict “biological males” from entering single-sex spaces, specifically with women-only jails.

Smith responded by saying she hadn’t “seen” anything to suggest a need for a restriction, and that she was not “going in that direction,” but feels the issue revolves around “modesty.”

“If you have not been fully transitioned, then you shouldn’t be exposing yourself in a female-only space,” Smith said. “You should either be behind in a washroom stall, or … you should show modesty, and then it doesn’t become an issue.”

“When women feel that they’re private spaces when they’re there alone, and they’re naked, that’s when they want to make sure that their safe places are protected.”

Smith said she hasn’t seen an “emergence of problems” with Alberta jails.

Her stance differs significantly from federal Conservative leader Pierre Pollievre’s.

Earlier this year, he said female spaces should be exclusively for females, “not for biological males,” all the while acknowledging that the decision is mostly up to the provinces or cities.

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The United Conservative Party government said it plans to introduce legislation in the fall requiring parental consent when students 15 and under want to change their name or pronouns at school. Students who are 16 and 17 would not need consent, but their parents would have to be notified.

The province also plans to restrict gender affirmation treatments, instruction on gender and sexuality in school, and the participation of transgender women in sports.

The controversial proposal has been labelled “draconian” by politicians, doctors, scholars, and LGBTQ+ activists.

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