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Trans activists hold protest outside RTÉ studios ahead of Prime Time programme tonight

Dozens of activists gathered outside RTÉ’s Donnybrook studios this evening.

TRANS-RIGHTS ACTIVISTS are staging a demonstration outside RTÉ studios over the plan to include Irish TV writer Graham Linehan in a programme tonight about transgender issues. 

The inclusion of Linehan – the creator of shows like Father Ted and the IT Crowd – in tonight’s Prime Time show has led to widespread criticism of RTÉ. 

An online petition calling for him to be removed from the show had garnered close to 6,000 signatures at the time of publication. 

Dozens of activists gathered outside RTÉ’s Donnybrook studios this evening at about 6.30pm in protest against Linehan’s inclusion. 

The demonstration was organised by the group, This Is Me – Transgender Healthcare Campaign, Ireland.

The protesters are taking issue with views Linehan has shared on the topic via his Twitter feed and says he is not an expert on the subject. 

Linehan frequently comments on transgender issues via social media. 

In an excerpt from the programme’s interview with Linehan, broadcast at the end of last Thursday’s programme, he says: 

You do not tell kids that they’ve been born into the wrong body just as you don’t tell anorexics that they are fat.

In a statement to TheJournal.ie yesterday, RTÉ said tonight’s edition of Prime Time will examine “the exponential growth in the number of young people seeking to change gender, and the implications of the proposed new law allowing them to do so without their parents’ consent”.

Labour LGBT were also present at the protest along with other LGBT groups. 

Co-chair of the group Karl Hayden said in a statement that it was “questionable as to why the producers have chosen now to make the programme”.

Prime Time airs tonight at 9.30pm

With reporting from Sean Murray

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Cormac Fitzgerald

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