Ending Compulsory Transgender Surgical Interventions

23 July 2015

Independent Member for Sydney, Alex Greenwich MP, today released a discussion paper arguing that NSW should remove the requirement for transgender people to undergo expensive and sometimes risky surgery to change their gender classification on government records. The discussion paper is available HERE

“Gender affirmation surgery is not always wanted, safe or available and the majority of transgender people live within their gender identity without surgery,” Mr Greenwich said.
 
“Excluding most transgender people from updating their state government records creates difficulties in accessing anything that requires identification and forces transgender people to continually explain the deeply personal experience of their transition to strangers.
 
“It means NSW Government records are incorrect and inconsistent with Australian Government records which allow passport sex classification updates without surgery,” Mr Greenwich said.
 
“Requiring a surgical procedure is a violation of human rights and the Australian Human Rights Commission has recommended all states remove this requirement and removal is in line with World Health Organization recommendations.
 
“The United Kingdom, New Zealand, Malta, Germany, Ireland, a number of USA states, and Ontario Canada have already removed surgical requirements and Norway is soon to follow,” Mr Greenwich said.
 
“The State should not interfere with people’s personal lives and not add to the stress and frustration of people who already experience stigma and disadvantage.
 
“I will be taking comments and stories on my discussion paper until 21 August, and a report on the submissions will information legislation to be introduced later this year with the NSW Cross-Party LGBTI working group,” Mr Greenwich concluded.