Pakistan’s trans community is celebrating after a detailed Bill to improve their lives has cleared the way to become law.
The National Assembly voted in favor to pass the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2017 on Tuesday. Now the Bill must simply received presidential assent before it becomes official law.
The historic Bill called for sweeping changes to the rights and protections of trans people. It aims to ‘provide for protection, relief and rehabilitation of rights of the transgender persons’.
It’s official! Just confirmed NA passed the Transgender Persons Bill in original form as passed by Senate. Will be signed into law by the President. THIS IS HUGE!
The Bill was drafted with collective input from community, trans activists & feminist allies. It’s a win✌
— Mehlab (@mehlabjameel) 8 May 2018
Pakistan’s first trans model and high profile trans activists, Kami Sid, was ‘so happy’ the Bill passed.
‘I am so happy that this bill has been passed but now I’m just concerned if it will be implemented,’ Sid told Images.
‘At the same time I see today as an iconic day. I want this to be remembered each year as National Trans Day.
‘We’ve been a neglected minority for so long but we’re now proving that we can do so much for ourselves. We’ll see more success stories in the future.’
What’s in the Bill
Just some of the amendments it approved included life imprisonment for anyone who forced a transgender person into illicit intercourse or kidnapped a transgender person.
Rape of a transgender person would also come with a death sentence or jail of up to 25 years.
The bill also would allow transgender people to officially ‘change’ their gender without approval from a medical board.
Trans people will also be protected from discrimination from employers, educational institutions, medical services, when renting or buying property and on public transport.