|Mercury Chaos (mercurychaos) wrote in f_t_m,|
@ 2009-08-12 21:06:00
|Entry tags:||media/news, resources: europe|
The Council of Europe has published an issue paper on human rights and gender identity which can be downloaded as a PDF.
The document states that the requirements for trans people undergo surgery in order to have their gender marker changed:
"...clearly run counter to the respect for the physical integrity of the person. To require sterilisation or other surgery as a prerequisite to enjoy legal recognition of one’s preferred gender ignores the fact that while such operations are often desired by transgender persons, this is not always the case. Moreover, surgery of this type is not always medically possible, available, or affordable without health insurance funding. The treatment may not be in accordance with the wishes and needs of the patient, nor prescribed by his/her medical specialist."
"On 27 February 2009, the Austrian Administrative High Court ruled that mandatory surgery was not a prerequisite for gender (and name) change.25 A transgender woman, who underwent all changes apart from the genital surgery and lived as a woman in all social relations, could establish to the court that her particular employment situation would not be conducive to the several months’ sick leave needed for the operation and that she could not leave her family financially uncared for. This led the court to point out that the legislator had to abolish the original requirement since the court was not able to establish any need for this specific requirement pertaining to transsexual women. In Germany, the Federal Supreme Court has indicated in a judgment that 'an operative intervention as a precondition for the change of gender is increasingly regarded as problematic or no longer tenable among experts'."
"Alternative classifications should be explored in close consultation with transgender persons and their organisations.37 From a human rights and health care perspective no mental disorder needs to be diagnosed in order to give access to treatment for a condition in need of medical care."
The case law of the European Court of Human Rights clearly requires states not only to provide for the possibility to undergo surgery leading to full gender-reassignment, but also that insurance plans should cover ‘‘medically necessary’’ treatment in general, which gender reassignment surgery is part of.38 The ruling of the Court has been successfully referred to by transgender people in several countries, such as Lithuania and Belgium, to extend the coverage of their health insurance. This standard should be implemented in all Council of Europe member states.