Thank God for Stacey Solomon; the only person to stand by the LGBTQ+ community in an episode of Loose Women earlier this week (January 11, 2019).
In a discussion surrounding the NHS policies that allows trans people to be treated on the ward of their gender, transgender women were referred to using male pronouns by two members of the panel - Gloria Hunniford and Andrea McLean - with only Solomon fighting the corner of the community that weren't even invited to be a part of the "debate".
"If I was walking around with a gown open at the back and my rear end sticking out, I would not want a man in the bed across the road," said Hunniford. "I think if a man still has his willy and has all the tackle, far as I'm concerned, he/she is a man, and I don't think that works in a women's ward."
Solomon disputed this, saying that "if you wouldn't want to be on a ward with the opposite gender, these [transgender] women feel exactly the same way as you. They do not want to be on a ward with men." She went on to describe trans women as "women, who identify as women", but McLean then interjected and said they were "men who identify as women".
It was a dangerous bit of television that only served to stoke the prejudice against the trans community, but one that Solomon should be proud for being a part of in delivering her educated opinion.
The question everybody's asking now is, why wasn't a trans person invited to be a part of the show and explain exactly how they feel in regards to the topic? It's something so simple, but apparently not what producers had in mind for the segment.
This isn't the first time panellists on the show have come under fire for their misguided views.
At one point, Coleen Nolan likened a bakery who doesn't believe in same-sex marriage refusing to bake a cake for a gay couple, to a bakery who is against ISIS being asked to mock up a cake with the terrorist movement's flag.
In Judy Finnigan's first appearance on the panel, she defended convicted rapist Ched Evans and said he had "served his time", and therefore should be able to return to football, adding that "the rape was not violent, he didn't actually cause any bodily harm to the person."
Nadia Sawalha has been in hot water when it comes to discussing the trans community in the past, facing a backlash on Twitter after saying that the word "transgender" was a "fashionable word that has been taken on".
Last year, Kim Woodburn was invited onto the show and told she was going on as Coleen wanted to bury the hatchet with her and end their long-running feud. That wasn't the case, and she was hit with bullying claims after Kim was attacked from all sides of the table and broke down into tears after bringing up her traumatic childhood.
There was even the time the show decided to run the poll, is it ever a woman's fault if she is raped?
We could go on for some time, but at this point it just seems as though Loose Women producers are stirring up controversies and throwing topics at their hosts which they're not equipped to deal with.
It's a shame, as the series is at times one of the most groundbreaking and eye-opening panel shows on television. It could be a fantastic platform for women to celebrate one another, lift each other up and fight for equality.
All of that is torn down however, when their hosts (and producers) show a lack of compassion and understanding for others who have to fight every second of their lives in a bid to be treated equal.
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