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Munroe Bergdorf speaks on Childline axe

SPEAKING OUT: Munroe Bergdorf

TRANSGENDER ACTIVIST Munroe Bergdorf has spoken out after being dropped from children’s charity Childlike.

Bergdorf was a keen supporter of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) and Childline, and was announced as Childline’s first LGBT+ campaigner.

The announcement of her partnership with the charity was followed by a series of tweets from Times Journalist Janice Turner, where she called the activist a “porn model.”

“Can you please explain why a children’s safeguarding charity has hired a porn model as a Childline ambassador? It’s an astonishing decision. Is it worth the cancelled direct debits?,” tweeted Turner.

In response, Bergdorf said: “Firstly I have never shot porn in my life, secondly demonising those who do isn’t okay either.

“This Pride month Childline had the opportunity to lead by example and stand up for the trans community, not bow down to anti-LGBT hate and overt transphobia.”

A day later, a twitter account named ‘Safe Schools Alliance’ sent an open letter to NSPCC CEO Peter Wanless, calling out Bergdrof’s personal image as “highly-sexualised” and “porn-influenced.”

Despite support from trans-activists and much criticism for Turner’s comments, NSPCC distanced themselves from Berdorf in a statement which read: “Munroe Bergdorf has supported the most recent phase of Childline’s campaign which aims to support children with LGBTQ+ concerns.

“Munroe has been referred to as a Childline Ambassador. At no point has she been an Ambassador for the Charity. She will have no ongoing relationship with Childline or the NSPCC.

“The NSPCC does not support, endorse or authorise any personal statements made by any celebrities who contribute to campaigns.”

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I'm so sad to be writing this, unbelievably sad. Yesterday a Times journalist Janice Turner decided to launch a transphobic hate campaign on Twitter, calling me a 'Porn Model' and suggesting that if @childline_official didn't stop working with me as a campaigner they would be urging people to cancel their direct debits. Firstly I have never shot porn in my life, secondly demonising those who do isn't okay either. This Pride Month Childline had the opportunity to lead by example and stand up for the trans community, not bow down to anti-LGBT hate and overt transphobia. But instead they decided to sever ties without speaking to me, delete all the content we made together and back-peddle without giving any reason why. This comes just a couple of months after parents throughout the UK threatened to remove their children from schools for teaching about LGBT relationships and identities. My role with Childline was not paid, I accepted their request to become their first LGBT+ campaigner because I care about the wellbeing of all LGBT+ kids, but especially trans kids who are consistently targeted by British media outlets. My heart goes out to all the LGBT+ kids who have contacted me over the past week and the 6000 LGBT+ kids who contacted Childline for help in the past year. Pride is about resisting this kind of hate, not giving into it.

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This marks the third time Bergdorf has been dropped as an ambassador, including L’Oreal and resigning as an LGBT advisor for the Labour party.

Speaking to BBC, she said that she is “tired” of “being treated like a second hand citizen.”

“It’s not just me. This happens to every single trans person that speaks about what we need as a community, how we need to push forward as a community and why what we’re being given is not enough,” she said.

“Being a trans person in the UK at the moment is like being a second class citizen.”
The charity has yet to explain why she was dropped, with Munroe stating that they didn’t even contact her. “They’ve said absolutely nothing. And the frustrating thing is that I know that I’m more than qualified for that role.”

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