Safeguarding is universal for good reason Last week Nicola Sturgeon’s government introduced the Gender Recognition Reform Bill (GRRB) at stage one.

Cabinet Secretary Shona Robison’s introductory speech sounded reasonable and fair, but those words do not match the deeds of the SNP leadership and they do not reflect reality.

The behaviour of the SNP leadership towards anyone with even the most benign question about this legislation has been aggressive, dismissive and openly hostile.

Hostility which has been tacitly endorsed by the First Minister repeatedly as she has ignored the deeply offensive and misogynistic abuse levelled at Joanna Cherry MP, former Labour leader Johann Lamont, JK Rowling and of course many, many other women and LGB people who have raised genuinely held concerns about trivialising the process for legal transition.

I will never understand the motivation or perspective of a First Minister who dismisses as invalid the worries and concerns held by female survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence about losing access to single-sex refuge and personal care.

To be clear, my concerns are not and never have been about trans people.

As someone who has been involved in child and adult safeguarding for decades, I know that bad actors can and do take advantage of loose policy.

It is therefore inexcusable to draft obviously bad law that discards safeguarding principles. Principles that were established as a consequence of decades of real harm.

This view has been dismissed as alarmist and transphobic, but these are universal principles and are there to protect everyone including trans people. Predators will use any means available to access those upon whom they prey. In Kirkcaldy, trans identifying Katie Dolatowski was convicted of assaulting a 10-year-old child in a local supermarket toilet.

As a direct consequence the media framed this sexual predator as trans.

Indeed, across the UK convicted sexual predators are casually identifying as trans to secure transfer to female prisons where some have gone on to viciously attack vulnerable women.

None of this behaviour is reflective of the trans people I know.

This is the behaviour of determined sexual predators and legislation must be designed to protect the trans community from becoming the ready cover for such devious individuals.

While I support reform, at my selection hustings I set out the deep flaws in the GRRB proposal. That night my position won the room and was a key factor in securing my candidacy.

Although GRRB has passed stage one, nine courageous SNP MSPs either voted against or abstained, and I applaud each and every one of them.

I know others in the SNP and Labour are holding out for significant amendments that would return safeguarding to the heart of this currently dangerous legislation.

This is vital. Safeguarding must never be optional for anyone.