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Canberra considers intersex box for birth certificates

Canberra considers intersex box for birth certificates

Legal experts have advised the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) government in Canberra that gender options on official documents should be changed to suit the needs of intersex and transgender people.

Birth certificates should include the options male, female, intersex and indeterminate, ACT’s Law Reform Advisory Council said, and transgender people should be able to chose their gender on official documents even if they haven’t had surgery.

The Council’s report, Beyond the Binary: Legal Recognition of Sex and Gender Diversity in the ACT, said:

‘The category of intersex will ensure that if a decision was made to assign the sex ‘female’ or ‘male’ to an intersex child at or after their birth, and it later becomes apparent that the assigned sex does not align with the child’s sex and and gender identity, it is possible for the child, at a late stage of their life, to alter the record of their sex not only to male or female as the case may be, but also to intersex.’

The legal experts added that the ‘indeterminate’ category ‘should be used only when it is not possible to determine the sex of a premature still-born child.’

The report said that the current practice of requiring transgender people to go through gender realignment surgery before legally recognizing their identity is ‘inhumane’.

‘It violates a person’s human rights to privacy and to bodily integrity, the right to freedom from torture, and the right to equal legal status unless they submit to invasive medical procedures,’ said the report.

ACT Attorney-General Simon Corbell said the government are ‘anticipating amendments to the Births Deaths and Marriages Act as a result of the recommendations of the Law Reform Advisory Council’s inquiry and report on the treatment of interest and transgender persons,’ Canberra Times report.