Following the government’s long-overdue response on Gender Recognition Act reforms, Pride in London is calling out the lack of meaningful change for transgender people in today’s announcement. The government’s response also ignores the findings of the GRA public consultation, in which 70% of the 100,000 people who participated came out in support of trans people and trans rights.
Rhammel O’Dwyer-Afflick, Director of Communications for Pride in London, said: “After three years of dither and delay, the UK Government has finally released what has turned out to be an inadequate response on Gender Recognition Act reforms. It is both astonishing and disappointing that it has taken them so long to announce such minimal changes.
“While on first glance it may appear that some progress has been made, the proposed changes are worryingly vague and unhelpful - such as failing to define the “nominal amount” charged for obtaining a Gender Recognition Certificate. This comes across as particularly tone-deaf from the Government given trans individuals in the UK face financial difficulties at a far higher rate than cisgender people.
“We also note that there is no hint of progress towards de-medicalised self-determination of gender in this country, which Ireland, the Netherlands, Denmark, Malta, Sweden, Norway and Belgium have all introduced in recent years without issue. The response also fails to mention non-binary people, meaning the Government intends to ignore the continued issues these communities face as well.
“The bottom line is that our trans siblings deserve more and they deserve better, and we refuse to let the Government draw a line under this following today’s announcement. We will be writing to the Minister for Women and Equalities immediately to understand how she plans to improve the rights and wellbeing of trans communities going forward. It is vital for the safety of all trans people in the UK that the Government commits to making more progress in this space.
“We also wish to acknowledge that, despite unfounded claims from a small minority, under the Equality Act 2010 trans people are still legally able to use most separate/single-sex services based on their gender, whether or not they hold a gender recognition certificate. We also celebrate last week’s news of the tribunal that ruled non-binary and gender non-conforming people are protected under the Equality Act, and we extend our thanks to the British Medical Association for publicly backing the right of trans and non-binary people to self-identify.
“All of us here at Pride in London stand unequivocally with trans communities and we will not let up in our ongoing fight for equity for all. The modern Pride movement must lift up these communities so they can enjoy the rights they need and deserve.”