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Today is Wednesday, November 28, 2007


FTM Lawyer Stephen Whittle in Line for Human Rights Award

[UNITED KINGDOM] - A Manchester legal expert who fights discrimination against fellow transsexuals will learn tonight whether he has won a top human rights award.

Dr. Stephen Whittle
Dr Stephen Whittle, who is a law lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University, spends hours of his spare time writing reports for the courts to help those who have been discriminated against at work.

He also offers training to companies and organisations to make sure their workplace is welcoming to all employees.

Recently, he has been involved in the case of a transsexual woman who claims to have been turned down for a job in the West Yorkshire Police force because of her gender.

And he is delighted that his contribution has been recognised with a nomination for the prestigious Human Rights Award 2002, which is given annually by the human rights organisations Justice and Liberty to mark contributions to the protection and promotion of rights and freedoms.

Dr Whittle, 47, who lives in Stockport with his partner and four children, said: "This is an incredible privilege in recognition of the work we have done over the years and I am very pleased to have been short-listed.

"I have been involved in campaigning for transsexual rights for nearly 30 years - right back to the 1970s when we were considered to be the bottom of the pile."

Dr Whittle decided on an academic career after being sacked from three jobs because he was a transsexual.

Dr Royston Makepeace, head of the school of Law at MMU, said: "We are proud of Stephen. His fight reminds us that the law is moveable and shaped by all our human values."

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