Trans rights next on my ‘progressive’ agenda, declares Nicola Sturgeon

Changing the law on transsexualism is the “next step” on the ‘progressive journey’ after same-sex marriage, Scotland’s First Minister has said.

Nicola Sturgeon was speaking to homosexual news website PinkNews about her plans for LGBT issues following an event it hosted for politicians and activists.

In November, the Scottish Government backed a “self-declaration system” for people who want to legally ‘change’ sex as it launched a consultation on altering the law.

Gender act

Speaking to PinkNews, she praised the country for being the first in the UK to consult on same-sex marriage and also referenced homosexual adoption.

“The next step on this journey is to ensure that we are doing more to make Scotland fairer for transgender people.

“This is why we have recently consulted on plans to reform the UK-wide 2004 Gender Recognition Act”, she said.

Last year, Mrs Sturgeon spoke of her pride that “Scotland is now considered one of the most progressive countries” on LGBT issues.

Legal threat

Last week the Scottish Government was told it may face legal action over school transgender guidance it endorsed and funded.

‘Supporting Transgender Young People: Guidance For Schools in Scotland’ says teachers should not tell parents if their child changes gender at school unless the child, who could be as young as four years old, gives permission first.

Lawyers for The Christian Institute warned the guide “contains glaring errors in relation to the current law”.

A mother and feminist campaigner also criticised the guidance, saying it left behind school girls – in favour of transsexual students.

Westminster plans

In Westminster, the Government plans to launch a consultation on transsexualism in the coming weeks.

It was initially expected to have been launched last year, but was delayed when former equalities minister Justine Greening privately admitted the issue was “complex” and “divisive”.

This month the Government said men who say they are women will not automatically have the right to enter female-only spaces such as toilets and changing rooms.

The Equalities Office is resisting pressure from activists who say transgender people should be allowed to use whichever toilets and changing facilities they want.

Related Resources