Joanna Cherry has warned a comedy club it must reinstate its show at the Festival and apologise, or take it to court.
The SNP Edinburgh South MP is threatening to sue The Stand, co-founded by her party colleague Tommy Sheppard, for canceling her show – a decision she claims is illegal.
Cherry’s lawyers have sent a letter to The Stand warning that if it does not back down, it will seek damages and legal fees.
Some staff at the venue refused to work the night of their Fringe show.
Cherry believes they were reluctant because of their outspoken “gender critical” views and their opposition to the Scottish Government’s attempts to reform the way people can legally change their gender.
Warning: Scottish National Party MP Joanna Cherry wants apology after her festival show was cancelled.
His lawyers have cited a statement from the venue that said it could not hold the event “adequately staffed, safely and in compliance with the law,” as potentially defamatory “as it clearly suggests that our client poses some type of danger.” . .
A talk In Conversation… with Ms Cherry is scheduled for August 10 as part of a series of political interviews, with other events involving Manchester mayor Andy Burnham and former Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn.
But the venue sparked backlash for canceling Cherry’s show because many staff members were “unwilling to work this event.”
He said the cancellation was “the thin tip of the wedge” of an attack on free speech.
Ms Cherry said: ‘The Stand’s actions and all that followed are symptomatic of a wider problem in our society.
“I am deeply concerned that those who hold perfectly legitimate views on a range of issues, including women like me, are regularly misrepresented, deplatformed and, in some cases, facing harm or loss of our livelihoods.”
In the letter to The Stand, his lawyers demand an agreed statement acknowledging that the club has “acted unlawfully by discriminating against our client” and an apology with wording agreed by the MP.
He also wants to “restore the event” in the Scottish capital.
If The Stand does not agree to the stated terms, its lawyers said they would “implement all available legal remedies in court.”
The SNP Edinburgh South MP is threatening to sue The Stand (pictured), co-founded by her party colleague Tommy Sheppard, for canceling her show – a decision she claims is illegal.
Cherry has committed to donating any money she wins to a charity of her choice.
He criticizes Scotland’s gender recognition reform plans, which make it easier for people to change their legally recognized sex.
Last week, she said she felt like she had been “canceled and deplatformed” because she was a lesbian who has critical views on gender. But she said she was “very encouraged” by the support she had received.
Defending her “reasonable requests” to the club, Ms Cherry added: “I am prepared to take all legal action necessary to vindicate my right not to be misrepresented or discriminated against.” It’s not about money. My main goal is to have The Stand’s actions recognized as illegal and to ensure that the event continues.
‘I asked the Stand to apologize to me too. If you do not agree to my reasonable requests, I intend to ask the court to decide the matter.’
David McKie, of Glasgow-based law firm Levy & McRae, said it was the firm’s “clear and unequivocal view” that the decision to cancel the show was “unlawful and discriminatory”.
He told the club: “There is no defense available to you that justifies or can justify the decision as a matter of law.”
McKie added that a claim would be brought to Edinburgh Sheriff Court if The Stand did not respond within seven days.
Last week, the club said several members of its key operational staff, including venue management and box office staff, were unwilling to work the event. He added: “We will not force our staff to work this event and have therefore concluded that the event cannot be carried out with adequate staff, safely and in compliance with the laws.”
The Stand, which was set up in 1995 by Mr Sheppard, has been contacted for comment.