Following the passing of a Sinn Féin motion tabled by Mayor Fintan Warfield in South Dublin County Council this week, the representative for Templeogue-Terenure has called on government to address the concerns raised by trans campaigners in advance of gender recognition legislation.
Mayor Warfield said:
“Ireland is the only country in the EU which has no provision for legal gender recognition. I welcome that the state is finally going through a process of recognition for trans people and providing for the legal recognition of their true gender.
Recognition will allow people to be themselves. Fears of stigma and judgement on the basis of gender will begin to fade. A new birth certificate will be issued.
Imagine for one minute, the exhaustion of having to explain why your gender on certain documents is not the same. Gender recognition will allow an individual’s documents to add up, where identification is required. It is however extremely disappointing that this Bill does not go further in protecting the rights of trans people. Many members of the trans community are still excluded from this legislation.
Within the framework of the current Bill young trans people are particularly vulnerable. Without legal protection, young people will be open to discrimination.
The current Bill also requires that a “medical evaluation of the applicant” be carried out. This is diagnosis by any other name.
The Bill also states that an applicant for gender recognition must be single, meaning that married trans persons must divorce if they are to be recognised in their preferred gender. A situation should not be allowed to arise where trans people are forced to choose between their families and their right to be legally recognised.
Trans rights are human rights. Government must work closely with the trans community to improve this legislation prior to it becoming law”.