Activist Posie Parker: Let her in, say Nats, Greens have safety concerns

Anti-transgender rights activist Posie Parker at a rally in Glasgow last month. Photo:
Anti-transgender rights activist Posie Parker at a rally in Glasgow last month. Photo:
Political parties have differing views on a controversial anti-transgender activist from the United Kingdom being allowed to enter the country as Immigration New Zealand continues to review her case.

Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull, also known as Posie Parker, planned to hold rallies at Albert Park in Auckland and Civic Square in Wellington this weekend.

Supporters of Keen-Minshull were seen performing Nazi salutes and abusing LGBTQIA counter-protesters at her Melbourne event in Australia yesterday.

But Terri Lipanovic, of the local Posie Parker organising committee, said Keen-Minshull was not anti-trans, she was simply "pro women's and children's safety".

Any neo-Nazis turning up at rallies in Auckland and Wellington this weekend will be told to leave, she said.

Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has not commented on Keen-Minshull's case following media reports, however she posted a video online saying to Hipkins:

"Revoke my visa at your peril.

"Roll the dice, my friend. I don't think you'll dare to keep me from coming into New Zealand. But we'll see."

National deputy leader Nicola Willis. Photo: RNZ
National deputy leader Nicola Willis. Photo: RNZ
National Party deputy leader Nicola Willis told RNZ's First Up programme this morning Immigration New Zealand would struggle to find evidence to keep Keen-Minshull out of the country and believed she should be allowed entry.

"This is a free and liberal democracy and part of that is that we believe in freedom of expression even when we really don't like the views of those that are expressing themselves freely.

"We uphold that right. And I'm a big believer that sunlight is a good disinfectant. Where people have views that some of us find abhorrent, sometimes the best thing is to allow others to respond with their counter views."

Willis said no-one was free to incite violence however, and if similar scenes were demonstrated here as were in Melbourne, the law should be used against them.

Green Party immigration spokesperson Ricardo Menéndez-March told RNZ's Morning Report programme today he strongly opposed Keen-Minshull being allowed into Aotearoa.

"Having someone like Posie coming here to spew violence, and attracting the kind of neo-Nazi crowd they had in Australia could actually risk the well-being of rainbow communities and Muslim communities as well."

Melbourne was not the first event where such scenes had been demonstrated, he said, and there had become a trend of her attracting fascist groups and individuals.

As an event organiser, Menéndez-March said Keen-Minshull had a "duty of care" to not enable Nazis.

"The kind of rhetoric being spewed at those events is literally about the elimination of rainbow communities."

Greens' immigration spokesperson Ricardo Menéndez-March. Photo: supplied
Greens' immigration spokesperson Ricardo Menéndez-March. Photo: supplied
Menéndez-March said his argument was focused on Immigration New Zealand's ability to factor in public safety, rather than silencing her.

She had a "massive" audience online, he said, and no-one was stopping her from speaking there.

Keen-Minshull supporter Terri Lipanovic spoke to Morning Report, saying transgender women were "fully intact males" and should not be allowed "in our safe spaces", which included toilets, showers, gym changing rooms and women's refuges. 

Lipanovic said Keen-Minshull did not oppose trans rights but said women and children "need safe spaces" and "most men are good but we don't know who the bad ones are".

When asked what she would say to Keen-Minshull's well-documented links to extreme right-wing groups, she said: "Posie takes money from where it is offered".

In a statement, Women's Liberation Aotearoa spokesperson Tracy Bass said it was not supporting the planned events in any way.

"We do not hold women responsible for the appearance of these men at Let Women Speak events, but we call on Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull and the New Zealand organisations and individuals supporting her events to make public statements opposing far right and fascist groups and politics, and making it plain that there is no place for such groups at Let Women Speak events.

"WLA in not supporting the events in any capacity as an organisation and we encourage our members to consider staying away unless such clear public statements are forthcoming."