In a proposed amendment, the Government have suggested pregnant women be called ‘pregnant people’ to avoid excluding the transgender community.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s amendment will be to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which the UK has been a signatory of since the 70’s. Sunday Times reported that the FCO’s submission says that using the term “pregnant people” would avoid excluding “transgender people who have given birth.”
An FCO spokesman said: “The UK does not object to the use of the term ‘pregnant woman’. We strongly support the right to life of pregnant women, and we have requested that the Human Rights Committee does not exclude pregnant transgender people from that right to life.”
The amendment aims to ensure females who identify as male but have kept their female sex organs, and can still conceive, are covered by the terminology. So far, there has only been two recorded cases of transgender pregnancy in the UK.
Feminist writer Sarah Ditum commented: “This isn’t inclusion. This is making women unmentionable. Having a female body and knowing what that means for reproduction doesn’t make you ‘exclusionary’. Forcing us to decorously scrub out any reference to our sex on pain of being called bigots is an insult.”
The Office for National Statistics recently came under fire for suggesting identifying your gender should be voluntary in the 2021 census.
Theresa May announced last week that the government will push changes to the Gender Recognition Act, allowing people to ‘self-certify’ their gender. Reports claim men could get legal rights to use women’s hospital wards, prisons, toilets and changing rooms.
The Foreign Office said: ‘We requested that the UN human rights committee made it clear that the same right extends to pregnant transgender people.’