'Loose Women' Sparks Backlash Over Comments During Trans Debate

'Drag Race' star Michelle Visage is just one person who has called out the panel.

‘Loose Women’ is facing a backlash after the panellists made a series of controversial comments during a debate about trans people.

Friday’s show saw Andrea McLean, Nadia Sawalha, Stacey Solomon and Gloria Hunniford discuss the recent NHS row that came after a Telegraph investigation revealed that those who self-identify as female have been allowed to stay on women-only hospital wards.

Despite saying she supported those who “choose” to be transgender, Gloria stated her belief is that if a “man still had his willy and his tackle, as far as I’m concerned, he/she is a man”, and should not be placed on a women’s ward.

The 'Loose Women' panel have sparked controversy again
The 'Loose Women' panel have sparked controversy again

Andrea remarked that she believes the choice of the majority was being taken away, explaining “nine people on a ward could be feeling uncomfortable for the sake of one”.

While Nadia said she felt sympathy for all sides of the argument, she went on to suggest that “another ward” for trans people could be a possibility.

Luckily, Stacey was on hand to offer a more informed insight, commenting that just because someone hasn’t had gender confirmation surgery, doesn’t mean they are not a woman, and called for trans women to be integrated, not segregated.

She said: “Just as you wouldn’t want to be on a ward with the opposite gender, these women, who identify as women but have different body parts, they feel exactly they same as you – they do not want to be on a ward with men, because they have always felt they are a woman.

“There should not have to be another ward, because if you identify as a woman, why aren’t you allowed to identify as a woman, and be a woman?”

The debate left many people feeling angry at the panel’s misunderstanding of gender issues, with some calling them out on social media:

So angry at views I'm hearing on @loosewomen totally transphobia good for @StaceySolomon abit of a voice of reason trans women are women Shame on you #loosewomen

— Debbie Sharp (@iAMdebbiesharp) January 11, 2019

As if I've just watched #LooseWomen in 2019 and heard Gloria Hunniford refer to trans women as he/she. If you don't know which pronoun to use THEY is just fine. And if the whole pronoun thing still baffles you it's probably best to use none at all. pic.twitter.com/7E8Wz77zmB

— shane telford. (@MrShaneReaction) January 11, 2019

Can always count on @StaceySolomon to say something I 1000% agree with on #LooseWomen !! Why aren’t trans WOMEN allowed on a ward specially for WOMEN , when they ARE A WOMAN?!??!!? It’s sad to see so many people still believe you need a vagina to be a woman 🙄😒

— Katie (@katierpayne3) January 11, 2019

@loosewomen trans women are women whether they have had surgery or not:)) people need to stop being uncomfortable with what they don’t understand.

— ❄️𝕸𝖊𝖌𝖆𝖓❄️ (@legoghs) January 11, 2019

#loosewomen I have just a few words for your ‘should a trans women be in a women’s ward’ GET OVER IT! If they identify as a women THEY ARE A WOMEN! You upper class rich snobby idiots! (Apart from Stacey) This program honestly really gets to me🤯

— SYD (@syderz_) January 11, 2019

trans women are WOMEN. not a man who identifies as a woman. let them be women. #loosewomen

— Mils (@loseurgayy) January 11, 2019

#loosewomen Not being funny. But there are patients having to be treated in the corridors of hospitals as the wards of full and yet poor little cis people are crying because they don't want to share a ward with a trans person? 😂 check your privilege and do one

— Luke 🎱 (@MrLukasBye) January 11, 2019

Did this bitch just suggest we might have other wards JUST FOR TRANS PEOPLE.

Ok I’m actually turning this shit off now.

FFS #LooseWomen

— DAN!EL 🥔 (@rastamiller) January 11, 2019

@loosewomen I can't believe @StaceySolomon is the only voice of reason. You stating trans is the minority, trans & LGBT+ along with those who are BME are minority groups are marginalised already, without being told you can't be treated on this ward, # integration not segregation

— Chris Charles-Wyatt (@CharlesWyatt1) January 11, 2019

Watching @loosewomen proving how un-educated the hosts are today on the Trans Row on NHS wards. If you identify as a female/male it does not mean you have to have an op to prove who you are. Debates over a separate ward for a minority. What happened to inclusivity? #LooseWomen

— PC Kriss Hubbard (@PC3039Hubbard) January 11, 2019

So disgusted with the way they (minus @StaceySolomon) have slammed Trans people as "predators". If they are in hospital and not for gender reassignment, heres a thought THEY ARE ILL! Furious with the level of ignorance is disgusting #loosewomen

— Jon Dexter (@JonMDexter) January 11, 2019

What a load of bollocks #LooseWomen spout about trans issues. Don’t be saying you’re all for trans rights then being bigots about having issues with them being near you in women only spaces. Fuck right off

— ✨MALCOLM✨ (@leakingteapot) January 11, 2019

Watching trans debate on @loosewomen please remember that it is not a “choice” for people it be trans as Gloria said, Stacey seemed to be the only one who understands. Trans people face enough difficulty and when they’re ill why make it even harder for them?

— Laura Rose (@Laura_Lou_1984) January 11, 2019

Yes Nadia, we'll have an extra trans ward because the NHS isn't struggling at all #LooseWomen

— Darren Haywood (@darren_haywood) January 11, 2019

Their most famous critic came in the form of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ judge Michelle Visage, who called the show out for having no trans representation during the debate.

Here's an idea @loosewomen how about you have a TRANS woman on there to speak rather than be spoken ABOUT? no one is equipped for this conversation and that's NOT fair

— michelle visage (@michellevisage) January 11, 2019

This sentiment was echoed by many others on social media, who agreed the discussion would have been better served with the input of a trans woman.

Literally!!! Four women commenting on how a trans person feels. Invite a trans person to explain their feelings instead 🤯

— Tom (@tomstoneman) January 11, 2019

@loosewomen you should have a trans person on the panel involved in this debate. I would feel absolutely fine with a trans women on my ward, pre or post surgery, she's a women 🤷🏻♀️

— Jessica (@jessica_ed1) January 11, 2019

How very self-righteous to have a conversation about trans rights without a single trans person present. #CancelLooseWomen

— Wade ✨ (@WadeFrith) January 11, 2019

@loosewomen , although I completely agree with everything that @StaceySolomon was saying, it is not fair to have this conversation without a trans person present on the panel. Revisit this later on with the relevant people addressing the matter

— KRISpy Kreme (@KristianJon97) January 11, 2019

Hmmmm also minorities are less important apparently, sounds familiar, get this stupidity off my TV and get some actual trans representation to talk about a subject THAT INVOLVES THEM @loosewomen

— georgiaray (@georgia44151894) January 11, 2019

HuffPost UK has contacted a ‘Loose Women’ spokesperson for comment and is awaiting a response.

The views displayed by the majority of the panel on Friday were somewhat of a step back for the show, as it previously made TV history for trans representation in 2016.

India Willoughby’s appearance as a panellist meant it was the first time an all-female show had featured a transwoman on the presenting team, with the episode subsequently winning a Diversity In Media award.

However, it is far from the first time the daytime show has been embroiled in controversy.

‘Loose Women’ airs weekdays at 12.30pm on ITV.

Useful websites and helplines:


What's Hot