UK Moves to Ease Process of Obtaining Gender Recognition Certificate

Prime Minister Theresa May has announced efforts to simplify and streamline the process of obtaining a Gender Recognition Certificate in the United Kingdom for transgender citizens. The move is a part of a groundbreaking initiative known as the “LGBT Action Plan.”

The initiative is a result of a government survey that gathered information from over 100,000 LGBTQ+ people in the UK. Over 14,000 of the respondents were either transgender or non-binary. For both transgender and non-binary individuals, having their gender recognized legally is an essential step in allowing them to realize their full rights as a citizen and allowing them to realize their truth.  

Prime Minister May hopes to de-medicalize the process of getting a certificate so that more trans and non-binary people can receive the certificate, with the medical and bureaucratic leaps and bounds currently required.

The Prime Minister speaking on the issue stated, “Being trans should never be treated as a mental illness.” As of right now, the rules require applicants to supply various forms of evidence, including detailed medical reports, consent from a spouse if the individual is married, and proof that they’ve lived in their preferred gender for at least two years. The original legislation was a huge win for the LGBT community back in 2004, but has grown outdated.  While no huge changes are being made just yet, the hope is that Prime Minister May’s consultation will be a step in the right direction.

Further reading:

We support reforming the Gender Recognition Act (Amnesty International UK)

Legal recognition of gender change could be made easier (ITV News) 


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