Monsoon, the UK women’s fashion retailer has been left in a state of inner conflict and confusion, as the store first turned away ‘non-binary’ 18 year old, Charlie Moore, from Monsoon’s female changing rooms, only to later turn woke – regretting its actions and apologising profusely. The store went on to issue a woke statement and offer Charlie a free prom dress, as the shop is ‘committed to inclusivity’.
So let’s try to clarify this… Monsoon sells clothes for women and girls. 18 year old Charlie identifies as non-binary, but clearly has an appearance resembling a biological male*. Charlie was shopping for a prom dress with their friend, also non-binary, so the two of them go into the female changing rooms where women and children were present. Not surprisingly the store received complaints about their presence from those women and children, concerned and disturbed by the presence of two 18 year olds they presumed to be males. Accordingly, Charlie was instructed by store managers to leave the changing rooms as “males aren’t allowed to try our clothes on”, and that they had received complaints.
Charlie felt humiliated, “like I wasn’t welcome or wanted”. Charlie went on to say “if it is store policy, I think questions should be raised around whether that policy is compliant in the 21st century.”
But it’s worth noting that latest guidance from the UK’s Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) states that organisations can legally prevent, limit or modify trans people’s access to such a single-sex service, such as changing rooms, gyms and refuges in certain scenarios. This makes perfect sense.
Sadly Monsoon’s senior management are clearly woke, as the store later issued an apology to Charlie, opened an investigation into the incident, and offered to help Charlie find the “perfect prom dress” free of charge. If that wasn’t woke enough, Monsoon then issued this statement:
“Monsoon is committed to diversity and inclusivity and we want as many people as possible to enjoy our clothes and designs. The majority of our stores are small with limited changing facilities and as such we endeavour to work with all our customers; considering each of their individual requirements, with the aim of accommodating their needs and wishes.”
Sounds like Monsoon is doing the proverbial ‘dancing on the head of a pin’. Shouldn’t they be following the common-sense guidance of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)?
So here’s the problem that is unfortunately becoming more common place – if someone is non-binary, then how does a store determine the most suitable changing rooms? Must business owners create separate LGBTQI+ facilities?
Ultimately, do most women and girls want biological men to use the same changing rooms, toilets etc?
* comments in the original article, accounts of staff and customers, accompanying photos all lead most to conclude that Charlie is a biological male.
Read more here.