Transgender people won a major victory last night (12 July), with France joining a growing number of countries that allow people to legally change their gender without surgery.
This means no more psychiatrist certificates, no more proofs of sex reassignment surgery: above all, an end to the demand for sterilization.
After the National Assembly voted to adopt the amendment, the changes will allow anyone to change their gender status if they are able to demonstrate ‘by an adequate combination of facts that their legal gender status does not match their lived gender.’
As examples of the evidence now required, the amendment suggests simply that the individual can show that they are living according to their claimed gender identity socially, at work and within their family environment.
This would apply not only to adults, but also to ’emancipated minors’: young people held competent to take important decisions on their own behalf.
While this isn’t the win many trans people in France were hoping for, as campaigners were pressing for self-certification of gender.
In a statement, Inter-LGBT welcomed this as the beginning of recognition of the fundamental rights of trans persons.
While regretting the failure of the Assembly to remove judges entirely from the process, or to open gender recognition out to all young persons, Inter-LGBT expressed the hope that these amendments, too, could be added when the Senate discusses the matter in September.
According to Clémence Zamora-Cruz, spokesperson for umbrella group Inter-LGBT: ‘The work is not complete: but it is a step forward, as medicalization is no longer required.’