UK: ‘Sex-free’ category passports for transgenders

Last Updated: Monday, September 19, 2011 - 17:39

London: The UK is considering plans to allow transgenders to opt out of the gender category in their passports.

The British Home Office’s new proposal comes under pressure from the Liberal Democrats.

Though the current system allows a transgender person to alter the sex if they undergo sex change, intersex people, who possess both male and female reproductive organs, are forced to make a choice.

Under the new proposal, the passport would have a single box marked ‘sex’, and citizens would have a choice to strike it out, The Telegraph reports.

Supporters of the new move argue it would avoid problems encountered by people whose appearance does not match the sex stated on their passport.

But some Home Office officials said it could create more difficulties.

“We are exploring with international partners and relevant stakeholders the security implications of gender not being displayed on the passport,” a Home Office spokesperson said.

“The UK Government is totally committed to creating a society that is fair to everyone. We are committed to tackling prejudice and discrimination against transgender people at home and around the world”, Liberal Democrat Home Office Minister Lynne Featherstone said.

“We need concerted government action to tear down barriers and help to build a fairer society for transgender people,” he added.

The decision comes in the wake of the introduction of new passport rules in Australia, which allow citizens to indicate their gender as male, female or indeterminate, without undergoing surgery as proof of a sex change.

ANI



First Published: Monday, September 19, 2011 - 17:39

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