The council said it was asked to fly the flags to mark International Women’s Day which takes place this Sunday but, the authority did not realise by doing so it had inadvertently become involved in an ongoing row about trans issues.
A message on the flags, seen flying outside the town halls today, read 'Woman, noun, adult female'.
Campaigners from LGBTQ groups said the flags outside Bootle and Southport town halls were ‘a hostile transphobic dog whistle.’
But the authority did not realise by doing so it had inadvertently become involved in an ongoing row about trans issues.
Adrian Harrop who is a GP and LGBTQ+ activist from Liverpool tweeted to the council to raise his concerns surrounding the flag.
Adrian said: “The flag you’re flying at the moment is a hostile transphobic dog whistle, recognised as a symbol and brand of one of Britain’s most outspoken and visible trans-antagonists, and the leader of a transphobic hate group.”
Sefton Council released this statement earlier today:
We were asked to support International Women’s Day by flying a flag above Bootle & Southport Town Halls which we did so with effect from Monday, March 2.
However we have since been made aware of a potential issue regarding the messaging on the flag and have taken them down.
Sefton Council is a local authority with a proud history of supporting LGBTQ+ rights across the borough, having previously been awarded the NAVAJO LGBTQ Quality Mark for our work and we continue to support all members of our communities.