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The draft bill will reform the UK-wide Gender Recognition Act of 2004 in Scotland, which allows trans people to obtain a gender recognition certificate
The draft bill will reform the UK-wide Gender Recognition Act of 2004 in Scotland, which allows trans people to obtain a GRC by applying to a tribunal called the Gender Recognition Panel.
The Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill proposes removing the current requirement for people to apply to the UK Gender Recognition Panel and drops the need for applicants to provide medical or psychiatric evidence of a diagnosis of gender dysphoria.
The Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill suggests retaining the requirement for people to make a legally-binding declaration that they have been living in their acquired gender for three months and intend to do so permanently.
The bill also introduces a minimum three month “period of reflection” between applying for a Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC) and having confirmation.
This means applicants must have been living in their acquired gender for at least six months before getting legal recognition.
People aged sixteen and over would be allowed to apply under the proposed changes, instead of having to wait until they were 18.
Passports, driving licences, medical records and employment records are already changed by self-declaration when a person starts transitioning.
Leading LGBTI organisations including Scottish Trans Alliance, Equality Network, LGBT Youth Scotland, Stonewall Scotland and LGBT Health and Wellbeing welcomed the new draft bill, describing it as a “step in the right direction”.
James Morton, Scottish Trans Alliance Manager, said: “The current process to change the sex on a trans person’s birth certificate is a humiliating, offensive and expensive red-tape nightmare which requires them to submit intrusive psychiatric evidence to a faceless tribunal panel years after they transitioned.”