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British Govt Blocks Scottish Gender Change Legislation

The British government moved to block new Scottish legislation that would make it easier for transgender people to have their gender legally recognized. The action stokes a highly charged debate over transgender rights and widens a constitutional rift, as the government in Edinburgh campaigns for Scottish independence. The law would allow transgender people in Scotland to be issued a new birth certificate without a medical diagnosis and make it easier to legally change their genders. Under the legislation, people age 16 and older could apply for a gender recognition certificate by legally declaring that they are living in their “acquired” genders and intend to do so permanently. The British government in London argues that the move by the Scottish Parliament breaches equalities legislation that applies across Britain by affording people different treatment depending on where they live. It is the first time the government in London has overruled Scotland’s Parliament by using the authority of a 25-year-old statute. Response: Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, described the action as “a full-frontal attack on our democratically elected Scottish Parliament.” The Scottish government would defend the legislation, she said. Context:
In Britain, the debate over transgender rights has become increasingly contested, with prominent voices, including the writer J.K. Rowling, rallying opposition to the Scottish legislation and other proposals on gender recognition. The country’s only youth gender clinic was shut down last year.

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