JK Rowling returns human rights award after claiming organisers wrongly labelled her transphobic

JK Rowling is returning an award claiming organisers have wrongly labelled her transphobic.

The Harry Potter author, 55, sent back her Ripple of Hope Award  to US group Robert F Kennedy Human Rights.

Its president, Kerry Kennedy, was among those who criticised the best-selling writer's views.

Rowling has been at the centre of a row over trans rights since last year.

Announcing her decision to hand back the gong, Rowling wrote online the organisation's president and daughter of the late senator Robert Kennedy, "felt it necessary to publish a statement denouncing my views" on the group's website.

The author said she was saddened but added: “The statement incorrectly implied that I was transphobic.

"I absolutely refute the accusation that I hate trans people or wish them ill.”

She said in a post on her website: "In solidarity with those who have contacted me but who are struggling to make their voices heard, and because of the very serious conflict of views between myself and RFKHR, I feel I have no option but to return the Ripple of Hope Award bestowed upon me last year.

"I am deeply saddened that RFKHR has felt compelled to adopt this stance, but no award or honour, no matter my admiration for the person for whom it was named, means so much to me that I would forfeit the right to follow the dictates of my own conscience."

Rowling has previously said that she was partly motivated to speak out about the issue because of her experience of abuse and sexual assault.


Actors from the Harry Potter universe, including Daniel Radcliffe and Eddie Redmayne, have criticised the author.

Four authors resigned from Rowling's literary agency after claiming the company refused to publish a statement in support of transgender rights.

Earlier this year she faced backlash over a series of allegedly transphobic tweets.

Rowling posted a response to a headline referring to “people who menstruate”.

She wrote: “I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”

Several people hit back to point out it was not only women born women who menstruate.

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