Tasmanian LGBTI advocates have welcomed the state government’s commitment to removing the requirement for trans people  to divorce before their gender can be officially recognised, but say the reforms should go further by also ending forced surgery.

Attorney-General Elise Archer yesterday confirmed that the Tasmanian government would move on the issue of trans forced divorce, in response to a question from The Greens.

Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesperson Martine Delaney said that trans people still face additional barriers to equitable treatment, including the requirement in Tasmania and most other parts of Australia that they must have genital surgery before they can change their legal sex.

“We welcome the government’s commitment to removing the archaic requirement that transgender partners divorce before their true gender is officially recognised, but this is just one of the unnecessary hurdles to fair and equal treatment for transgender and gender diverse Tasmanians,” she said.

“We are talking to the government about also removing the requirement that transgender people must have surgery before their gender is officially recognised on their birth certificate.

“Some transgender people can’t have surgery for medical or financial reasons, and it is unfair to leave them in legal limbo.

“The government should stop meddling in the lives of transgender and gender diverse people, and allow us the same opportunities in life as everyone else.”

An online petition is collecting increasing support to demand state and territory governments scrap the requirement for surgery before trans people can correct their legal sex.

Last year’s marriage equality legislation placed an obligation on each state and territory to remove the forced divorce provision by December this year.

A hangover from the time before same-sex marriage equality, the forced divorce requirement prevents married people from correcting the gender on their birth certificate, officially creating a same-sex union.

© Star Observer 2019 | For the latest in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) news in Australia, be sure to visit starobserver.com.au daily. You can also read our latest magazines or Join us on our Facebook page and Twitter feed.