Sunday, May 31, 2020

Reform aims to ban registration of sex change in civil status

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Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, March 30, 2020, in front of the Parliament. – Zoltan Mathe / AP / SIPA

Hungary wants to ban the registration of the sex change in the civil status. A bill was submitted to parliament this week by the government of the sovereignist Prime Minister Viktor Orban. It aims to define gender by “biological sex based on birth and the genome”. Transgender and transsexual people, whether operated or not, would no longer be authorized to request a sex change from the
civil status, as it is currently the case.

The legislative amendment was tabled the day after Parliament passed a law on Monday that provided Viktor Orban with virtually unlimited powers under the state of emergency established to combat the coronavirus. The date and procedures for examining the new text are not known.

Reform criticized

“It is appalling that the government is taking advantage of the coronavirus crisis to try to ban legal recognition of the genre,” said Tamas Dombos, member of the board of directors of the Hungarian LGBT Alliance. “Such a measure would force trans people to live with documents that do not correspond to their true identity and their appearance,” he regrets. “This exposes them to potential discrimination in administration, employment, housing, access to goods and services.”

The Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatovic, said on Thursday that the bill was “contrary to European legal standards”. “Transgender people have the right to legal recognition of their sex on the basis of self-determination,” she said in a statement.

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