Dundee Women’s Festival U-turn over exclusion of campaign group

A campaign group controversially excluded from Dundee Women’s Festival is now being invited to take part in the programme.

Women Won’t Wheesht, a grassroots women’s rights organisation in Scotland, heard on Monday from solicitors acting on behalf of the festival to confirm their inclusion.

The climbdown comes after the group claimed it would consider legal action after being told by festival organisers last month that their application had been rejected.

‘Our event will be included’

A spokeswomen from Women Won’t Wheesht said: “We have received correspondence today from solicitors acting on behalf of Dundee Women’s Festival and we are pleased to confirm that our event will be included in Dundee Women’s Festival 2024 programme of events.

“We do not feel it would be beneficial to prolong this unfortunate situation any longer, and we are heartened that Dundee Women’s Festival, have stressed, via their solicitors, their respect for those who advocate for women’s sex-based rights, so are confident that a situation of this nature will not happen again.”

Supporters of the For Women Scotland and the Scottish Feminist Network take part in a demonstration outside the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, ahead of the vote on the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill. Image: PA.

Women Won’t Wheesht were among the groups to campaign against the Scottish Government’s plans to allow people to legally change their gender through self-ID.

Festival organisers initially said the decision to reject the group’s application was due to the organisation “not aligning with our festival values”.

They added the “unanimous decision” was made by the board and was “final”.

Dundee Women’s Festival has run for more than 20 years and is managed by a small group of volunteers.

The event, which runs every March, celebrates the impact of women locally and worldwide, at participating venues across the city.

Further details of the Women Won’t Wheesht event will be published in due course.

Dundee Women’s Festival was approached for comment.

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