TRANSGENDER Australians in Tasmania can change their gender on their birth certificates without needing surgery – starting today.
The bill was passed in the state parliament back in April, but only come into force from today.
Transgender people in Tasmania, Australia, can now get the gender on their birth certificates changed easier (stock image)[/caption]
Tasmanians are now allowed to leave gender off their birth certificates altogether – making it the first state in Australia in which it’s optional.
The reforms also remove the need for people to have gender reassignment surgery before they can change it on their sex on their birth certificate.
The new law brings Tasmania into line with Western Australia, the Northern Territory, South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory in making the changes – more than half of the country’s eight states and territories.
The Victorian parliament also voted in favour of such a change in June.
Tasmanians aged over 16 can apply to change their registered gender without their parents’ approval.
The Liberal state government had opposed the changes.
Can you legally change the gender on your birth certificate in the UK?
IF you want to change your gender status legally in the UK, you can apply to a Gender Recognition Panel (GRP) for a Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC).
You have to be over 18 to apply.
Once a GRC is made, your birth certificate will be re-issued confirming your true gender and new chosen name if relevant.
To grant a GRC, the panel must be satisfied that you:
- have or have had gender dysphoria;
- have lived in your true gender for two years before you make your application; and
- intend to continue living in your true gender until your death
You do not need to have had gender reassignment surgery.
If you are granted a full GRC, and have a UK birth entry, the panel will send a full copy of the GRC to the relevant register office as soon as it is issued.
A new entry will then be made in the Gender Recognition Register which will be used by the registrar to produce a new birth certificate for you.
A free short birth certificate will then be sent to you by post together with information about how to purchase new full certificates.
You will also need to inform the relevant authorities and certain government departments about your change of gender – including the HMRC and any organisation that pays you a pension, benefits or tax credits.
But the legislation passed the lower house on the casting vote of Liberal Speaker Sue Hickey, who crossed the floor.
Transgender and gender diverse advocates plan to mark the laws coming into effect with cupcakes and champagne at the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages in Hobart.
Aussie PM Scott Morrison last year branded the push to remove gender from birth certificates “ridiculous”.
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And legal experts previously warned the Tasmanian bill could make refusing to call someone by their preferred pronoun illegal.
Dr Greg Walsh from Australia’s University of Notre Dame said although the reforms were largely a good thing he did not agree at dictating what words people must use.
“Although it is admirable that parliamentarians want to ensure those who are transgender are respected, the attempt to use state power to force individuals to use language that contradicts their deeply held beliefs is completely unacceptable’,” he told The Australian.
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