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Instagram Bans “Gender-Critical” Charity Ahead of UK Elections

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Instagram has permanently banned the account of Sex Matters, a UK-based charity that advocates for the preservation of single-sex services to ensure privacy, dignity, safety, and choice, especially for women and girls.

Founded to maintain clarity regarding sex in law, policy, and language, Sex Matters uses its social media presence, notably an Instagram account under the handle @SexMattersOrg, to spread its message and uphold what it describes as human rights based on “gender critical” principles. These principles assert the immutability and importance of biological sex.

The account’s suspension occurred on June 3, with Instagram citing a violation of its community guidelines. Sex Matters responded swiftly, appealing the decision within minutes only to be met with a quick rejection.

Reacting to the ban, Sex Matters’ leadership, including CEO Maya Forstater and Chair Naomi Cunningham, urgently contacted Instagram’s support team. Their communication emphasized the charity’s legal and ethical foundations, including Forstater’s successful 2021 legal challenge against workplace discrimination over her views.

In a letter to Instagram, the charity highlighted the importance of its social-media presence, stating, “Our social-media accounts are a key part of our campaigning activity on our charitable objectives.” The organization’s board of trustees, composed of lawyers, academics, and other experts, oversees its social media output, ensuring alignment with its charitable mission.

In their appeal, Sex Matters urged Instagram to reconsider its decision, stating, “We urge Instagram to reinstate our account as a matter of urgency.”

This clampdown coincides with a crucial time as the UK approaches a general election, significantly impacting Sex Matters’ campaign.

The charity has expressed grave concerns about the effect of this ban on their ability to engage and inform their audience during this period.

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