Britain aims for transgender equality with review of Gender Recognition Act

The British government has announced plans for a new package of work, including a review of the Gender Recognition Act, to help promote transgender equality.

Transgender Britain - Via Shutterstock
Transgender Britain – Via Shutterstock

Unveiled by Women and Equalities Minister, Nicky Morgan, the new plan will simplify the legal process of changing gender, remove unnecessary red tape and ‘make the process fit for the 21st Century’.

The government is working to remove unnecessary requests for gender information, including in official documents; improve the way people are supported by gender identity services through work on training for NHS staff; and tackling harassment and bullying in higher education by working with universities.

In 2013, it was found that trans young people aged 26 and under, in England were 48 per cent more likely to have attempted suicide in their life compared to 26 per cent of non-transgender peers. Trans young people were also more likely to have self-harmed.

Nicky Morgan said, “No-one should have to face discrimination or live in fear because of who they are. We must set the pace on this agenda and lead the way in better understanding and supporting our trans people. That’s why I am delighted to announce that we will be reviewing the Gender Recognition Act – helping overturn an outdated system and ensure the transgender person’s needs are at the heart of the process.”

“It’s fantastic to see trans issue increasingly on the public agenda. But we still don’t know enough – that’s why we are going to work with transgender people to understand more about the issues facing them.”

Minister for Women, Equalities and Family Justice, Caroline Dinenage said, “To really achieve equality, we have to provide equal support and pay equal attention to the needs of all LGB&T groups.”

“That’s why today’s announcement is so important. By reviewing the legal process of changing your gender, rethinking when and why we collect gender information, and working with the transgender community to better understand the problems they face, we take another vital step towards achieving true equality for transgender people.”

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Alison is the Digital Content Editor for WeAreTheCity. She has a BA Honours degree in Journalism and History from the University of Portsmouth. She has previously worked in the marketing sector and in a copywriting role. Alison’s other passions and hobbies include writing, blogging and travelling.

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