UK

Woman wearing ‘terf’ badge in Pride video not JK Rowling – Oxfam International

Oxfam International said it had ‘made a mistake’ (Yui Mok/PA)
Oxfam International said it had ‘made a mistake’ (Yui Mok/PA)

A cartoon depiction of a woman wearing a “terf” badge in a Pride video was not intended to portray Harry Potter author JK Rowling, Oxfam International has said.

The organisation was forced to remove, edit and repost a video it had shared on social media which showed a woman wearing a “terf” (trans-exclusionary radical feminist) badge, which many on social media said looked like the outspoken writer.

But a statement from Oxfam International said “there was no intention by Oxfam or the film-makers for this slide to have portrayed any particular person or people”.

Rowling has regularly spoken out on the issue of gender identity and has previously strongly denied accusations of transphobia.

An Oxfam International spokesperson said: “Oxfam believes that all people should be able to make decisions which affect their lives, enjoy their rights and live a life free of discrimination and violence, including people from LGBTQIA+ communities.

“In efforts to make an important point about the real harm caused by transphobia, we made a mistake.

“We have therefore edited the video to remove the term ‘terf’ and we are sorry for the offence it caused. There was no intention by Oxfam or the film-makers for this slide to have portrayed any particular person or people.  

“We fully support both an individual’s rights to hold their philosophical beliefs and a person’s right to have their identity respected, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and sex characteristics.”

Oxfam International tweeted “we have removed the post because of concerns raised with us. We will repost shortly #ProtectThePride” before sharing the edited video, removing the section showing the woman wearing the “terf” badge.

“We are posting the updated video below, please reshare to show solidarity with the LGBTQIA+ community. None of us are safe until all of us are safe. This June, we call you to #ProtectThePride!” they tweeted.

A representative for Rowling said the author would not be commenting.