Response to the Scottish Consultation on changes to the Gender Recognition Act

Please find the consultation here and fill it in with reference to either this post or my previous post. A lot of transphobic people are going to fill this iin so we need those cis people who actually support us to get in on this.
If you remember nothing else, remember to demand recognition for everyone’s genders based on what each person says themself without anyone else getting to decide for them. EVERYONE includes nonbinary people and children and people who aren’t citizens. Everyone gets charge of their own gender. Everyone.

1. The initial view of Scottish Government is that applicants for legal gender recognition should no longer need to produce medical evidence or evidence that they have lived in their acquired gender for a defined period. The Scottish Government proposes to bring forward legislation to introduce a self-declaratory system for legal gender recognition instead.
Do you agree or disagree with this proposal?

* Agree
Don’t know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer, or make comments.
Yes to self declaration.

NO to fees beyond admin costs. NO to requiring notaries or formal witnesses such as solicitors. An individual person’s word and signature should be enough.


2. Should applicants to the proposed gender recognition system in Scotland have to provide a statutory declaration confirming they know what they are doing and intend to live in their acquired gender until death?

Don’t know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or make comments.
Something like a deed poll or a simple form should suffice.
This is NOT more complex or serious than confirming a change in name or address and should be just as easy as updating those records.

3. Should there be a limit on the number of times a person can get legal gender recognition?
Don’t know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or make comments
I’m honestly shocked that Scotland has a limit on name changes. This is really, really obviously a bad idea to the extent that I can’t even form an argument about why it’s wrong to impose an arbitrary limit on the number of times someone can update their birth certificate gender. THERE IS NO PROBLEM OF “FRIVOLOUS” REPEAT CHANGES OF NAME AND GENDER. Not only is the likelihood of frivolous requests vanishingly rare, they are also NOT a problem – anyone who is doing it for a joke will do it once and then change it back shortly after and this will have almost no consequences for anyone. Whereas someone who is really struggling to pin down their identity may get it wrong a few times before they get it right, each time with full sincerity and an arbitary limit of anything less than, say, 100 times is going to risk trapping someone with an unwanted and incorrect identity which is the very thing this Act is supposed to prevent.


4. If the Scottish Government takes forward legislation to adopt a self-declaration system for legal gender recognition, should this arrangement be open:
A. only to people whose birth or adoption was registered in Scotland, or who are resident in Scotland?
*B. to everyone?
C. Don’t know


5. The Scottish Government proposes that people aged 16 and 17 should be able to apply for and obtain legal recognition of their acquired gender. Do you agree or disagree?
Don’t know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or add comments.
Everyone should have the right to correct documentation regardless of their age or the views of their parents.


6. Which of the identified options for children under 16 do you most favour?

Option 1 – do nothing for children under 16
Option 2 – court process
Option 3 – parental application
Option 4 – minimum age of 12
*Option 5 – applications by capable children
None of these options
I would prefer that any child be able to apply on their own behalf without parental consent or involvement being required. I understand the desire to limit this to only some children but honestly it is better that any number of children learn that they will be listened to and taken seriously in this matter through any number of reapplications than that one transgender child have their recognition delayed because of their age or disability or parental objections.

7. Should it be possible to apply for and obtain legal gender recognition without any need for spousal consent?
Don’t know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or add comments.
The Spousal Veto – as the trans community has come to call it – essentially allows a spouse to decide what gender their partner legally is by either giving or witholding consent to the recognition or to divorce. There is already evidence of spouses refusing to either a GRC OR a divorce thus holding their partner in limbo indefinitely. Others have threatened to consent only if the partner gives them more than half of the assets or primary care of any children in a divorce settlement. This is clearly abuse and wouldn’t even be possible without the spousal veto becoming law.

NOBODY should have a say in what another person’s gender is.
Nothing about the marriage has materially changed after a successful recognition of one or both persons’ gender – the same two people are married to each other in what we all are supposed to imagine is an equal marriage . Asking for consent to update incorrect information about gender does not change the contract – unless same sex and opposite sex marriages are not equal in Scotland?

In any case, someone who does not wish to remain married to their partner should divorce them. The extra step of confirming whether or not you planning to remain married to THE SAME PERSON YOU MARRIED once their details are updated before either divorcing them or continuing to be just as married is entirely superfluous and as I outlined above, needlessly cruel.


8. Civil partnership is only available to same sex couples. This means that the civil partners cannot remain in their civil partnership if one of them wishes to obtain a full Gender Recognition Certificate.

Should they instead be allowed to remain in their civil partnership? This would mean that a woman and a man would be in the civil partnership.
*Don’t Know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or add comments.
I have no strong feelings on the difference between civil partnership and marriage. I would personally be happy to change a CP for a marriage in these circumstances.
However, other people might have strong feelings about their choice to get a CP instead of a marriage and may wish to remain in the institution they chose to join.

9. Should legal gender recognition stop being a ground of divorce or dissolution?
*Don’t Know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or add comments.
On one hand, it would send a clear message that transgender people are perfectly okay and not a problem if this stopped being grounds for divorce / dissolution.
On the other hand, waiting 1 to 2 years of living apart to prove an irtrievable breakdown of the marriage is a long time to stay married to someone who doesn’t want to be with you .
It may be outside of the scope of this consultation but No Fault Divorce is urgently needed here.

10. Are any changes to section 22 (prohibition on disclosure of information) necessary?
Don’t Know

I honestly don’t believe it is necessary to disclose to a third party without consent the gender recognition status or former name(s) of any person in any of those circumstances.
As no one has to my knowledge ever been prosecuted for the crime of revealing this information and I know that this crime is REGULARLY committed, I’m somewhat ambivalent on whether it should remain illegal as it being illegal doesn’t seem to be helping the community so far.
However, it should be considered harrassment to out people as trans whether they are recognised in their gender or not and the trans community needs to be given the knowledge on how to report and fix the constant breaches of data protection and other related crimes that happen to all of us whether we have a GRC or not.


11. Should a person who has been recognised in their acquired gender under the law of another jurisdiction be automatically recognised in Scotland without having to make an application?
Don’t Know
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer or add comments.
YES for all countries and YES this should include people who have a recognised nonbinary identity in another country regardless of whether or not Scotland does the right thing and acknowledges nonbinary people.

12. Should Scotland take action to recognise non-binary people?
Don’t Know

13. If you answered Yes to Question 12, which of the identified options to give recognition to non-binary people do you support? You can select more than one option.
*Option 1: Changes to administrative forms
Option 2: Book of Non-binary Identity
*Option 3: Limited document changes
*Option 4: Full recognition using proposed self-declaration system
Option 5: Incremental approach
*Option 6: Amendment of the Equality Act 2010
None of the above options
If you want, you can give reasons for your answer, add comments or, if you think none of Options 1 to 6 is suitable, describe your preferred option.
Option 1 you should be doing anyway.
Option 2 is a TERRIBLE idea and should not happen under any circumstances.
Option 3 you should do anyway and consult with the nonbinary community on which of those changes they want done first and fastest.
Option 4, full recognition may be radical but it’s also the ethically right thing to do. If anyone’s gender is legally recognised then EVERYONE should be able to get their gender legally recognised.
Option 6 you should do anyway. People need the protection of the Equality Act, flimsy as it is. Whether or not other countries will recognise nonbinary people whose gender is recognised in Scotland is immaterial. Some country or other will have to step into the 21st century on gender first and it could be Scotland.


16. Do you have any further comments about the review of the Gender Recognition Act 2004?


GET RID OF THE GENDER RECOGNITION REGISTER. Destroy all the records it holds and make no more records of who has had their gender recognised.
No one on that register is safe while one exists and could be hacked, leaked, “lost on the bus on a CD” or accessed by people who are allowed to access it but do so for corrupt reasons. The trans community is geniunely afraid that a future fascist government could get access to these records and use them to find us and imprison or kill us. We need it gone more than anyone could possibly need for it to exist,

If changing Marriage Laws is at all on the table – and the information provided suggests that it is – many of the problems discussed that could arise from making recognition simpler for all and available to nonbinary people can be easily avoided by defining marriage as between “two people” instead of “between a man and a man or a woman and a woman or a man and a woman” and adding “or two people with nonbinary gender or one such person and a woman or one such person and a man”. Get the references to gender OUT of the legally binding parts of marriage and marriage vows (as we all hoped the UK would do in 2010 and it didn’t) and a whole host of possible problems disappear.

Add methods to switch between “Mother”, “Father”, “Parent 1” and “Parent 2” on your child’s birth or adoption certificate and methods for a child to correct such on their own birth certificate. Or actually REMOVE gendered titles for parents from all forthcoming birth certificates.


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