Trans Sexual Rights in New Zealand

I just read a news story telling of a department store in New Zealand called Farmers that is instating “non-specific” change rooms in their clothing departments and retraining the staff to provide sensitive customer care.  These actions are in response to the mistreatment of a trans woman named Mary Haddock, a prominent media personality there.

Mary Haddock -Staniland

Mary Haddock-Staniland

On the one hand, one might think that Farmers is making a forward thinking progressive business decision by creating and naming this changing room space “gender neutral”. On the other hand this approach is not helping society in making the leap to accepting whatever gender  I am  expressing and welcoming me into the restroom or change room that matches it….no questions asked.  I believe that should be the ultimate goal in our evolution as humans.

Either way there is nothing “neutral” about trans-women.  The trans-women I know are very clear and leave no doubt as to what side of the gap they live on.  Their feminine spirit could never be construed as neutral.

As for training service staff, I send Farmers my kudos.  Brand representatives (service staff) must be authentically kind, caring and helpful to everyone all the time. That is what “service” means.  This is basic common sense.

Here’s to a kindness based life.


Your comments on this topic or any other are always welcome below.

You can always reach me at

4 thoughts on “Trans Sexual Rights in New Zealand

    • Thanks for visiting Pam. Yes, the goal is a movement toward unconditional acceptance. I’m grateful to Mary Haddock-Staniland for taking a stand and bringing this incident to light. Thanks for your support.

  1. I am a gay male, and have been out for almost 11 years now. I’m currently 26 years old. I’ve learned A LOT about myself over the years and know I still have a great deal more to learn. One of the things I’ve learned is just because you do not understand something doesn’t mean it has to keep you from accepting it. I don’t have a grasp on the Transgender community and the feelings and sense they have of who they are and where they have found themselves in life, but I accept all transgendered people regardless. We find ourselves in different places in life and we have to respect and love each other trying to move forward to our complete selves and happiness. You are brave and embody the virtue of COURAGE, I respect you profoundly and wish nothing but the best of what makes you happy in life.

    • Hi Linden, Thanks so much for visiting my site and taking the time to leave a comment. You are a very intelligent person, Linden. Your awareness of diversity is far beyond your years. I commend you and encourage you to reach out to others and spread the love and acceptance that you feel. You are right. You don’t need to understand someone in order to accept them for who they are. That, in fact, is the very embodiment of the unconditional acceptance of which I speak. The goal we should all have is to reach our potential as compassionate human beings. We must not let feelings of insecurity and low self esteem get in our way. Self acceptance and unconditional acceptance of others is the path to freedom of expression. Please keep in touch, Linden. Wishing you a kindness based life. Stephanie

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