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Police chief sparks outrage after sharing pronoun video
20 October 2019, 13:07
A top police officer has sparked online outrage after sharing a video encouraging people to "make sharing, educating and respecting personal pronouns commonplace."
Deputy Chief Constable Julie Cooke posted the video to raise awareness of International Pronoun Day, but her video sparked criticism as social media users hit out at her for wasting police resources.
She said Pronoun Day was particularly important for people who are transgender or gender-non-conforming.
Others questioned why the police were getting involved in the issue when their resources would be better spent dealing with crime.
DCC Cooke said in the video that "being misgendered can have a huge impact on somebody and their personal wellbeing," the officer went on to say it can be a form of abuse.
The group campaigning for Pronoun Day said being referred to by the wrong pronouns "particularly affects transgender and gender-nonconforming people. Together, we can transform society to celebrate people’s multiple, intersecting identities."
The video, which has been viewed more than 1.1 million times, was branded a waste of time by author and feminist campaigner Julie Bindel, she tweeted the officer to ask: "Why are you wasting time on this? Shouldn't you be detecting crime and catching criminals?"
Why are you wasting time on this? Shouldn't you be detecting crime and catching criminals?— Julie Bindel (@bindelj) October 16, 2019
Chief Constable of North Wales police Carl Foulkes said the officer was "leading the way for policing" and making people think about how they treat one another.
Yet again DCC Julie Cooke leading the way for policing and making us all think about how we treat, address and value everybody. Keep up the good work.— Carl Foulkes (@NWPCCFoulkes) October 16, 2019
Kristina Harrison, who identified on Twitter as transgender, questioned why the police were "wasting resources & interfering in a political/social matter."
I’m trans, why are police wasting resources & interfering in a political/social matter, at best a (welcome) social accommodation but also one being misused by many trans ppl who deny women’s basic rights & humanity then unreasonably expect pronoun politeness? @patel4witham— Kristina Harrison (@KJ_Harrison) October 16, 2019
Former UKIP MEP Patrick O'Flynn quipped that perhaps Cheshire Police "no longer identifies as a proper police force."