JK Rowling hails Allison Bailey after tribunal ruled lesbian barrister WAS victimised by chambers

JK Rowling hails ‘heroine’ Allison Bailey ‘for refusing to abandon her beliefs’ after tribunal ruled lesbian barrister WAS victimised by her chambers for her gender critical beliefs – but she loses Stonewall claim

  • Allison Bailey claimed that Stonewall convinced her employer to investigate her 
  • Ms Bailey argues there is a conflict between gay people and transgender people 
  • She sued Stonewall and Garden Court Chambers alleging discrimination 
  • Ms Bailey won her case against GCC but lost her case against charity Stonewall
  • Lawyer has repeatedly received backing from her friend, the author JK Rowling 

JK Rowling today praised a ‘gender-critical’ lesbian lawyer as her ‘heroine’ after she won a landmark employment tribunal case against her London chambers, who must pay her £22,000 in damages.

Allison Bailey accused Garden Court Chambers of withholding work from her and trying to crush her spirit after she criticised Stonewall‘s trans policies including recommendations to change pronouns from ‘she and he’ to ‘they and their’.

Ms Bailey’s gender-critical beliefs include that sex is biological and cannot change, and that the word ‘woman’ is defined as ‘adult human female’. 

Today she won her case for discrimination against Garden Court – but lost her case against Stonewall, who she had branded a ‘malign influence’ in British society and workplaces.

Within minutes of the judgment, her friend JK Rowling tweeted: ‘Allison Bailey is a heroine to me and innumerable other feminists for refusing to abandon her beliefs and principles in the fact of intimidation and discrimination. Congratulations’, adding: ‘And I couldn’t be prouder of my friend’.

In December 2018 Ms Bailey complained to her colleagues about the chambers becoming a Stonewall Diversity Champion, saying that Stonewall advocated ‘trans extremism’ and was complicit in a campaign of intimidation of those who questioned gender self-identity. 

She founded the LGB Alliance group, which argues there is a conflict between the rights of lesbian, gay and bisexual people, and transgender people – and opposes many of Stonewall’s policies, including the assertion that ‘trans women are women’.

Today a tribunal upheld her claim that Garden Court discriminated against her because of her belief. She was awarded £22,000 compensation. 

But the tribunal found against her in other elements of the case and dismissed her claim against Stonewall, who she accused of alleged discrimination because the chambers was a part of the charity’s Diversity Champions scheme.

Allison Bailey accused LGBTQ charity Stonewall of operating 'like a criminal protection racket' by persuading firms to follow its transgender policies. Pictured: Harry Potter author JK Rowling with Ms Bailey during a lunch with other prominent feminists in London in April

Allison Bailey accused LGBTQ charity Stonewall of operating ‘like a criminal protection racket’ by persuading firms to follow its transgender policies. Pictured: Harry Potter author JK Rowling with Ms Bailey during a lunch with other prominent feminists in London in April

Ms Rowling congratulated her friend on winning part of her employment tribunal case

Ms Rowling congratulated her friend on winning part of her employment tribunal case

But the tribunal did not accept that Ms Bailey had lost work and income because of her December 2018 protest, or that she was harmed by delays disclosing documents. Nor did it accept her claim that a complaint made by Stonewall about her tweets was engineered by a colleague who supported trans rights.

A separate claim that Stonewall had instructed or induced discrimination by Garden Court, or attempted to do so, was also rejected. 

She tweeted that it had been a victory for her, and said: ‘This is a vindication for all those who, like me, object to the erasure of biological sex, of women, and of same sex attraction as material realities. It represents judicial recognition of the abuse waged against us. Women in particular have been slandered as bigoted, harassed and defamed as transphobic and worse, simply for asserting our lawful rights and advocating for proper safeguarding’.

She added: ‘I have lost my case against Stonewall, but I have succeeded in exposing Stonewall’s conduct and the enormous and to my mind malign influence it wields in the workplace in society more generally. Organisations who put ‘Stonewall Law’ before Equality Law or seek to silence others from lawfully voicing their criticism of Stonewall may be acting unlawfully and will suffer the consequences, even if Stonewall does not’.

Ms Bailey, who is a lesbian, claimed that the LGBTQ charity convinced her employer Garden Court Chambers to investigate her support of gender-critical beliefs and sued both the charity and the chambers for discrimination. 

A Stonewall spokesman said today: ‘We are pleased that the Employment Tribunal has ruled in a decision published today that Stonewall has NOT been found to have instructed, caused or induced Garden Court Chambers to discriminate against Allison Bailey.

‘Our Diversity Champions programme supports employers to make their workplaces inclusive and supportive of LGBTQ+ employees. It provides resources, guidance and support for organisations who are committed to creating a workplace where everyone can thrive’.

Ms Bailey received backing from Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who tweeted a picture of her 'inspirational' friend to mark Lesbian Visibility Week

Ms Bailey received backing from Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who tweeted a picture of her ‘inspirational’ friend to mark Lesbian Visibility Week 

Ms Bailey claims that Stonewall convinced her employer Garden Court Chambers to investigate her support of gender-critical beliefs and is suing them both for discrimination

Ms Bailey claims that Stonewall convinced her employer Garden Court Chambers to investigate her support of gender-critical beliefs and is suing them both for discrimination 

Earlier this month on April 11, JK Rowling hosted some of Britain's most prominent feminists and women's activists - including Allison Bailey - to support the 'Respect My Sex' campaign

Earlier this month on April 11, JK Rowling hosted some of Britain’s most prominent feminists and women’s activists – including Allison Bailey – to support the ‘Respect My Sex’ campaign

Ms Bailey founded the LGB Alliance group, in 2019, which argues there is a conflict between the rights of lesbian, gay and bisexual people, and transgender people – and opposes many of Stonewall’s policies, including the assertion that ‘trans women are women’.

She claimed to have lost work and income due to GCC’s involvement with Stonewall’s Diversity Champions scheme, which she said was ‘exclusive’ and ‘discriminatory’ of her beliefs.

Ms Bailey has previously received backing from Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who tweeted a picture of her ‘inspirational’ friend to mark Lesbian Visibility Week earlier this year, sparking a trans row on social media. 

Stonewall had recommended GCC change the pronouns ‘she and he’ to ‘they and their’, Ms Bailey said. 

Ms Bailey claimed her income substantially reduced ‘in comparison to previous years, most notably to 2018’, blaming the central London law firm for the ‘withholding of instruction and work’ from her following these interactions.

Garden Court had said there is ‘not one shred of evidence’ to suggest she was deprived of work. Ms Bailey raised more than £495,000 to fund her legal case.

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