Last week, Rishi Sunak made his stance clear on trans rights and gender ideology – two weeks before Hate Crime Awareness Week.

Using the phrase ‘we shouldn’t get bullied into believing that people can be any sex they want to be’, he followed this up by preaching about love.

Since 2018, hate crimes against transgender people, that were reported to the police, have risen by 110% according to Home Office and police data.

Heather Paterson, 42, CEO of SAYiT, said: “Trans people are being used in a culture war, I don’t think Rishi Sunak actually cares about trans people at all.”

SAYiT is a support organisation for LGBTQ+ people in Sheffield that also provides one-to-one support and counselling.

Ms Paterson pointed out: “We have a cost-of-living crisis, a broken healthcare system, the climate crisis – whipping up false hysteria about 0.5% of the population is easier than addressing any of those issues.

“This will have a further negative impact on trans people’s mental health and influence further increases in hate crime.”

Hate crimes are criminal offences which are motivated by hostility towards someone’s race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability.

Ms Paterson, in response to the PM’s speech, said: “We are assuring young people that this is rhetoric and that laws/rules haven’t changed.

“There needs to be better knowledge of LGBTQ+ and specifically trans knowledge in [mental health] services – we need non-LGBTQ+ people to be vocal allies.

“Trans people are an easy target because they are such a small proportion of the population so will always be outnumbered.”

SAYiT runs a range of training courses in order to help improve awareness of LGBTQ+ and trans allyship – not just during Hate Crime Awareness Week.