Written evidence submitted by Mx Nicola Burr [GRA1914]
I am a trans person living in Bournemouth. I am supplying evidence as any changes to the Gender Recognition Act would directly impact me. I am non-binary, and I have never considered getting a GRA primarily because of my identity.
The GRA, even with the proposed changes, does not allow me to be recognised as myself. This lack of legal recognition also legitimises some of the discrimination I have faced at work and in my day-to-day activities. This ranges from snide comments in bathrooms either directed at myself or to their friends, to active discrimination at workplaces that have included a hostile environment and outing as trans due to internal systems.
I also don’t believe that I would be able to access the GRA even if I were a binary trans person. My transition has taken place in Canada and Guernsey, so many of the doctors who would be able to provide documentation are not on the approved list of medical professionals. This would involve having to see additional medical professionals so that a group of people I will never meet would be able to determine my gender.
I also find the concept of the requirement of spousal consent absolutely wrong. This gives another human being control over the legal recognition of another, leading to a potential controlling or abuse risk, and also provides an extra layer of bureaucracy to an already bureaucratic setup.
While the proposed changes to the GRA are certainly better than no changes at all, they do very little to make a material difference to the lives of trans people. I do believe that a system of self-ID would have been a welcome change, that would not noticeably impact on other vulnerable populations; all the things that are illegal (false legal statements, assault, sexual crimes, etc) would all still be illegal.
Thank you for your time