Spain passes new legislation giving more rights to trans people

Spain passes new legislation giving more rights to trans people 


On Thursday (December 22), the same day the Gender Recognition Reform act passed in Scotland, Spain’s lower house of Parliament passed legislation that allows people over 16 years of age to change their legally registered gender without any medical supervision.


Under the new law, minors aged 12 or 13 will need a judge’s authorization to make the change, while those between 14 and 16 will have to be accompanied by their parents or legal guardians.


Prior to the new law, transgender people in Spain needed a diagnosis by several doctors of gender dysphoria, and in some cases, also proof they had been living as their true gender for two years and records showing they had taken hormones.


The new legislation also bans conversion therapies, establishes fines and punishments for attacks on LGBT people and overturns a ban that prevented lesbian couples from registering their children under both parents’ names.

trans rights protest spain
Infantes Morcillo/Getty Images

While many are celebrating the victory for trans rights in the country, Human Rights Watch (HRW), warned that the legislation is a watered-down version of a much more sweeping trans rights bill that was rejected by Spain’s Congress of Deputies back in May.

That version would have “upheld children’s self-determination by allowing children and adolescents access to legal gender recognition,” as the global advocacy group say.


“It would also have allowed non-binary and blank gender markers on identity documents, acknowledging the rights and dignity of people who do not identify with a rigid gender binary,” HRW said.

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