Tasmania is set to be the first Australian state to completely remove gender from birth certificates in what’s being hailed as a huge step forward for the state’s transgender residents.
The amendments to the law would mean transgender people would be able to go about tasks where they have to prove their identity, such as applying for jobs, without being forced to disclose their transgender status.
As The Australian reports, other amendments propose removing the need for transgender people to have sex change surgery before switching gender on official documents.
Transgender activist, Martine Delaney, said changes such as these, particularly removing gender markers from birth certificates, will have a significant impact on transgender people.
“It is not doing away with gender. That information would still be recorded by the registrar and medical records in the hospital,” she told The Australian.
“It just simply wouldn’t be displayed on the birth certificate.”
Tasmanian Greens leader Cassy O’Connor, whose 20-year-old son Jasper is trans, stated the changes would be life-changing for every trans person living in the state.
“The flow-on effects of being able to have your birth certificate either gender neutral or changed to your correct gender are profoundly life-changing.
At the moment in Tasmania, if Jasper wants to have his birth certificate changed he will need to have a hysterectomy, and that is cruel and unnecessary.”
Christian and feminist groups associated with the Liberal government have lashed out at the motion, though, with many critics claiming changes made by the Greens and Labor have “hijacked” the original intention of the bill.
Australian Christian Lobby’s state director, Mark Brown, told The Australian the bill was “essentially abolishing gender” and “homogenising humanity”.
“The sex a child is born with is a scientific and immutable fact. Birth certificates are used to detail such historical truths.
“A person’s biological sex is changed or removed it greatly diminishes the significance and usefulness of birth certificates. Such changes, therefore, should be off-limits.”
The Tasmanian State Parliament’s next sitting date is set for November 20th where a decision will be made on the proposal.
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