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Surprising proposed changes to gender identification legislation

(65 Posts)
YankeeGran Tue 25-Jul-17 13:21:33

There seems to be little awareness of the current consultation on the Gender Recognition Bill in which the government proposes a surprising change to the present legislation.

What has received very little publicity is a new provision for those who wish to do so to change their gender identification merely by self-certifying. If the legislation becomes law, anyone can change their gender identity without any need to prove that they suffer from gender dysphoria, without undergoing any medical and/or psychological assessments, without any need to prove their commitment or undergo any treatment. In other words, a man can simply declare that he is a woman (and vice versa) and that's that.

While I understand that the proposal is intended to reduce the humiliation of the present law for genuine dysphoria sufferers, the impact of this proposal is something that has not been thought through because, under the provisions, these self certified biological males will have legal access to what have been women-only hospital wards, refuges, rape crisis centres, changing rooms and showers.

While I have no wish to discriminate against genuine dysphoria sufferers, their numbers are few - and certainly they are few compared with half the population of this country, the women and girls who will be most affected by these changes.

Ministers are conducting a survey of the LGBT community to inform their conclusions, but what about the half of the population whose views are not being surveyed? Are women and girls to have no say in this mind boggling proposal when their safety and privacy are at risk?

Anyone who speaks against the proposal is subjected to abuse. Indeed, Maria Miller, the MP who is behind this piece of insanity has complained that it's only women who have objected to her proposal. I wonder why. And if you think my concerns are hysterical nonsense, I ask you to imagine that your teenage daughter/granddaughter, when out shopping or going to the gym, will be sharing changing rooms and showering beside full intact males. If they object, they will be subject to prosecution for gender discrimination.

Can reasonable people allow this proposal to become the law of the land?

Oriel Tue 25-Jul-17 14:51:52

I read that the women protesting are feminists reacting to something Germaine Greer said... transgender people can't be women.

At the moment it would appear that an individual seeking a change in their gender has to be diagnosed with a mental health condition first, eg, gender dysphoria. To me that sounds very unfair.

I have to say that I don't quite see what you're objecting to. So, in answer to your question, I think it is entirely reasonable that this proposal becomes law.

YankeeGran Tue 25-Jul-17 15:05:18

so you're comfortable with the fact that intact biological males can use what have been women-only facilities? You're happy for them to be in refuges and communal changing rooms and showers?

I don't think I would be so bothered if use of these facilities were limited to truly gender dysphoric men, but in fact, it's not them I'm worried about; it's the perfectly normal men who will use this as a means to gain access to women and girls, many of whom are already in vulnerable situations.

Smileless2012 Tue 25-Jul-17 15:21:23

I don't wish to be rude YankeeGran but are you sure about this? I'm asking because I find it impossible to believe if it is to be exactly as you've stated in your OP. Where did you get this information from? Is there a link you could provide us with?

Ana Tue 25-Jul-17 15:28:05

Presumably you can just choose to change back if you decide you don't like it...? confused

Primrose65 Tue 25-Jul-17 15:31:06

Here's a link to the report in the Indie

I really cannot see why men would bother to change the gender on their birth certificates to get access to vulnerable women - the men who want to abuse women do it already.

Primrose65 Tue 25-Jul-17 15:31:28

x post - you beat me to it Ana

Smileless2012 Tue 25-Jul-17 15:33:59

Thanks for the linkssmile

YankeeGran Tue 25-Jul-17 15:47:43

Smileless2012 - that's why I started this post. The proposal is so unbelievable that anyone who hasn't heard about it thinks it must be made up or misunderstood. It's not. It's just what I said and the links confirm. Madness.

suzied Tue 25-Jul-17 15:53:47

I dont think any "perfectly normal"men would declare themself women ,I think anyone who did this would have some sort of psychological problem, or devious intent, which should be addressed. So if a male criminal fancied going to a woman's prison instead of a male one he could just say he was a woman? I don't think this is a good idea and could just create a whole load more problems.

Primrose65 Tue 25-Jul-17 16:26:15

I would imagine for prisons, they will assign on the basis of 'gender at time of arrest'. But yes, I suppose you could change your sex, commit a crime and then go to a women's prison. To be honest, I wouldn't want to be the only man in that situation.

YankeeGran Tue 25-Jul-17 17:00:34

Yes, after I sent 'perfectly normal man', I thought that was a dumb thing to say. I was thinking biologically rather than mentally, but of course, under the proposed changes, there is NO psychological, yes, any pervert can simply declare himself a woman and hey, presto!

Re: how this affects prisons, Google 'Paris Green' a transgender 'woman'(with a female penis, obviously) who for his own safety was sent to a women's prison where he had sex with two, a convicted murderer and a potential rapist in a female prison, but he has to be there for HIS safety!

Luckygirl Tue 25-Jul-17 17:31:32

It was in the ST this week. I find it very very hard to believe indeed. Let us hope that it will be voted out by parliament. Apologies to those who regard that statement as "sexist" or "discriminatory" but in my view it is quite simply completely bonkers.

Jinty44 Tue 25-Jul-17 18:04:32

I really am struggling to see what the politicians are trying to do here.

Yes, gender dysphoria must be terrible. But lets not kid ourselves, this proposed bill has nothing to do with people who suffer with this condition.

Let's consider some hypotheticals. You are a man, not a very nice man, one who looks down on women and enjoys treating them badly. You are not confused about your gender at all, you are a man and you are totally comfortable with that. Nevertheless, you apply for and receive a Gender Reassignment Certificate. You make no changes to how you live - you dress, speak, live like a man, just a man who has quietly got himself a certificate. Why would you do that? Well, you can now walk into women's toilets, changing rooms, hospital wards etc. and nobody - absolutely NOBODY - can ask you to leave. If you're particularly nasty, you can threaten to prosecute them for discrimination if they try. You enjoy seeing women's discomfort, enjoy seeing their frustration at not being able to do anything about you. And, if you take your nastiness too far and find yourself convicted of something, you have your certificate that insists you are sent to a women's prison. Where you'll complain about discrimination if you are segregated from the women in any way.

I don't know about you, but I think my hypothetical nasty man would thoroughly enjoy having this certificate. Remember, he doesn't have to actually do anything to change how he presents his gender. No drugs, no surgery (80% of current transgender males retain their penis anyway) no skirts, no make-up. Nothing. Doesn't even have to tell anyone.

Let's take the hypotheticals even further. Nasty man doesn't even bother getting a certificate, just uses that other nasty men have, to walk into women's spaces, safe if the knowledge that these bitches know better than to so much as look at him wrong 'cos he'll complain loud and long if they do.

Now, women of our age may seethe silently - what of the younger ones? Especially girls, still young and unsure. My hypothetical imaginings mean these girls are effectively GROOMED to not object to men walking in on them. What is this going to do to them? Their ability to set boundaries, to hone their instincts, to protect themselves?

I'm sure many of you will scoff and say 'that won't happen' or 'you're being too pessimistic'- but seriously, what is going to prevent these scenarios? I've seen estimates that transgender people are about 0.3% of the population. I'm guessing the number of misogynistic, opportunistic, predatory males (my nasty men) is way, way higher than that. Way higher.

Maybe I do know what the politicians are doing. There is a term I see often - 'virtue signalling'. What I would be more inclined to call 'holier than thou'. It seems to be quite the rage - say things that don't affect you personally, then sit back polishing your halo and ignoring the effects on anybody-but-you. I have so little respect left for politics.

YankeeGran Tue 25-Jul-17 18:20:50

Maria Miller, the MP responsible for this nonsense, says that enacting this legislation brings Britain into the 'modern' world and puts us in line with the 6 or 8 other countries who have already enacted this. If you go online, there is plenty of info about the ways in which this kind of legislation negatively impacts women and girls.

For the few - did someone one say .3% - of the population who are genuinely gender dysphoric, we are putting HALF OF THE POPULATION at risk. The safety and privacy of women and girls is of no concern to those who support this madness.

Since it is only the LGBT community that is being consulted about this proposal, I urge everyone who opposes it to write to your MP. This legislation WILL go ahead unless enough of us put pressure on our representatives to exhibit some common sense.

Oriel Tue 25-Jul-17 21:27:30

I have to say that the tone of your language shows that you are prejudiced against this proposal. That's your prerogative but I feel that before anyone else is drawn to your point of view that perhaps some facts would be informative... you've obviously researched prior to posting so could you help with the following...

In particular a couple of questions... what/who do you perceive to be at risk? Why and in what way is there a risk exactly? Assuming that you've answere these questions, What evidence do you have?

Can you give links to what you say please? In particular the six to eight countries who have already adopted this legislation?

GrandmaKT Tue 25-Jul-17 22:45:41

I read this at the weekend. I must admit the thing that concerned me most then (and still does) is that (according to the Sunday Times) "Men will be able to identify themselves as women - and women as men - and have their birth certificates altered to record their new gender". Does that mean the actual birth certificate will be retrospectively altered? Imagine the confusion! Genealogists will have a nightmare task! I can understand some people wish to change their gender and have some form of record - but not change the historical FACT that they were a male or female when they were born.

Primrose65 Tue 25-Jul-17 22:51:16

The only issue I have with all the scaremongering is that these hypothetical men are already in close proximity to loads of women. They stand next to them in the queue at the supermarket, live in the same house as women, work at the next desk to women.
They are already here! Do you really think they're sitting at home thinking 'If only I could get access to the Ladies toilets'?

grumppa Wed 26-Jul-17 08:47:44

And there I was, thinking this was just a cunning plan to resolve the BBC gender pay problems, as it would enable Fiona Bruce. Clare Balding, etc. simply to declare themselves to be men.

Oriel Wed 26-Jul-17 09:12:06

Grandma, I don't think that causing genealogists confusion should be a reason for not altering the birth certificates!

The whole point is that they were assigned the wrong gender at birth. Why would anyone put themselves through gender reassignment if their birth gender was correct?

YankeeGran Wed 26-Jul-17 09:55:13

Oriel - if after reading my opening comments and following the suggested links, you still do not understand the risks, then there is nothing more I can say. However, risks aside, why would any woman want to change clothes or shower in the gym next to a man? If this were not the case, why would we have women-only facilities in the first place? The issue of privacy is as important as safety.
And yes, we have probably all stood next to a trans man or used toilets where they have been, but my personal privacy is not threatened in either of these scenarios. It IS threatened in changing areas and showers...and if I were in a women's refuge, rape crisis center or hospital ward, I would be horrified to have to share facilities with someone who was clearly a man. The government keeps telling us how important single sex hospital wards which is it? Either they are important or they're not. Can't have it both ways.

Oriel Wed 26-Jul-17 10:15:34

I have read your posts and frankly I think that your reasoning is totally illogical and irrational.

You imply that every transgender person is a rapist and/or a pervert just waiting for the opportunity to attack women. I feel this is a very unfair and insulting assumption.

Where is the evidence to back up your theory that half the population will be put at risk?

YankeeGran Wed 26-Jul-17 13:18:36

Oriel - in case I have not made myself clear, I have zero interest in being 'objective' about the Gender Recognition Certificate. I am absolutely against the passage of this bonkers piece of legislation and am actively campaigning well beyond this thread on Gransnet.

I have never used the term rapist and have gone out of my way to express sympathy for people who are genuinely gender dysphoric. Of course they are no more likely to be sexual offenders than anyone in the wider population, but this does not mean that the legislation would not enable those with dubious motives to abuse what I have to assume are the good intentions behind the proposals. Biological men WILL have legal access to vulnerable women and girls in ways that have previously been illegal.

If you find this hard to believe, I suggest you have a look online at the resulting impact on the female populations of countries where similar legislation has already been enacted: Ireland, Malta, Denmark, Argentina and Colombia.

If you think my stance is unfair, I look forward to hearing how you will explain to your teenage granddaughter just why a biological male has the legal right to shower beside her.

Primrose65 Wed 26-Jul-17 13:52:55

I can't find evidence of the impact Yankee, perhaps post some links?

All these hypothetical men are already potentially using mixed sex changing rooms, mixed sex hospital wards and mixed sex toilets. Is there any evidence that the problems you envisage happen there already?

Smileless2012 Wed 26-Jul-17 17:41:15

I've been pondering about this since yesterday and have read the link several times because of this.

There's been almost 100% talk of men calling themselves women and nothing was mentioned until GrandmaKT's post of it being done the other way around.

There was a case I think only a year or two ago where a fully transgender male to female had to fight in court not to be sent to a male prison which I'm sure we'd all agree would have been outrageous, but not it seems outrageous enough to have been suggested in the first place. Is it therefore realistically likely that a man who calls himself a woman but is still physically a man, would be placed in a woman's prison?

Yankeegran you referred yesterday to Paris Green prison and sex taking place between a transgender man sent there for his own safety, and two female inmates. Was this rape or was it consensual because if it was the latter IMO it isn't as bad as the reference to it could imply.

There are divisions within the LGBT community. Some same sex couples agree with bringing children into their relationships while others don't. Some homosexuals and lesbians don't have an issue with bi sexual's while others do. Some are accepting of transgender's while others are not.

It is indeed very complex and until every minute detail of this proposed legislation is known impossible to what will run along side to ensure the safety of all.

I agree with Oriel that implying "every transgender person is a rapist/and or pervert just waiting to attack a very unfair and insulting assumption".

It's not so long ago when looking for pedophiles that the police looked first to the gay community. It would be a great pity if we as a society were to once again attribute sexual assaults and inappropriate sexual behaviour to any other than heterosexuals.