Imperial College London vice-provost says sorry for transphobia

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The vice-provost for education at Imperial College London, Professor Simone Buitendijk, has issued an apology in the wake of the scandal concerning sharing the anti-trans content on social media pages. Buitendijk first offered her apologies to the university’s student newspaper Felix last Friday (May 10) in response to a letter by 86 members of the university’s staff and student body raising concerns about her engagement into transphobic materials. The letter referred specifically to Buitendijk following and ‘liking’ content from Twitter accounts belonging to anti-trans groups such as Transgender Trend. Joanna Wormald, deputy editor of the Felix newspaper, collected more than 50 screenshots, spanning at least six months, attesting to the vice-provost’s social media activity. “Although I support the freedom of academics to follow and engage in debate in all areas, including on social media, on this occasion I now realize that social media is not the correct forum for such sensitive debates. I have elected to stop all engagement with these accounts and apologize for hurt or anxiety caused to members of our community. I fully support all trans staff and students and I hope that the open and honest discussion we have had can lead to improved collaboration to ensure a sense of safety and belonging for all trans students at Imperial,” her apology reads.

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