When essence precedes existence

The Women’s Institute has a new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy as of this month.

NFWI Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy

  1. Introduction
    The WI was founded on democratic ideals over 100 years ago and this commitment
    to equality is still central to our ethos today. The WI – the UK’s largest women’s
    membership organisation – is an inclusive, welcoming, supportive and progressive
    organisation for all women who live as women, including transgender women.

So there you go. It’s explicitly spelled out. Women are people who “live as women” and that includes men. It also excludes a fuck of a lot of women.

WI membership is open to all women who live as women, including transgender
women. The WI welcomes and celebrates a diverse cross-section of women, offering
a space where they can be themselves surrounded by other supportive women. We
do not ask members any personal questions as part of the joining process and are
committed to ensuring all members are treated fairly and equally whatever their
background or individual circumstances

Or sex. The WI is for women and it’s committed to pretending men are women and to protecting men from rude women who might ask rude questions about what men are doing in the WI.

Being a WI member means:
• Upholding the core values and ideals of the WI which are fellowship, truth,
tolerance, and justice.


They’ve certainly fallen down on that one.

We also have a duty of care to all WI members, who have the right to feel safe and
protected within our organisational structure.

Except women, of course. Women don’t have the right to feel safe and protected within the organisational structure of the WI.

The WI is an inclusive, supportive, and progressive organisation for all women who live as women, including transgender women. Transgender women are those [who are] assigned male at birth but live as women, and are welcome to join the WI and participate in WI activities in the same way as any other woman.

But transgender women aren’t “any other woman”; they are men.

What does “live as women” even mean?

The WI provides women with educational opportunities and the platform to campaign on issues that matter to them and their communities whilst always celebrating what it means to be a woman. Therefore, including transgender women furthers our objectives and enriches our membership to ensure we are a place for all women to celebrate who they are and influence positive change in their communities.

“Therefore”? I’m not seeing the logic.

The WI is focused on supporting women through every stage of their lives. Therefore, our members will include women who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or who have recently given birth, and it is important these women are supported. For example, this may mean ensuring women feel able to bring their baby to WI meetings and providing a quiet space where members can breastfeed or express milk where possible. Talking to members about this is the best way to ensure their needs are met.

Such women will surely welcome men joining them in the quiet space to watch them breastfeed or express milk, as long as those men are “living as women.”

I hope millions of women leave the WI over the next few weeks.

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