5 Social, Economic and Legal Implications
The key points discussed in this booklet have been as follows:
Transsexualism is the condition in which a person is born with a
mental gender opposite to their physical sex.
Transsexualism is a rare, but genuine and debilitating, medical
condition, for which the only possible treatment is gender
Transsexualism is not transvestism or homosexuality.
Transsexualism is not a perversion or a 'lifestyle choice'.
Transsexuals do not choose to be the way they are, they are born
Gender Reassignment for transsexuals enables them to become fully
functional citizens, and has a very high success rate.
Gender Reassignment is now almost unobtainable on the NHS. Private
treatment is extremely expensive, putting it out of the reach of
many transsexuals. Psychological problems and suicides frequently
result when treatment is unobtainable.
Transsexuals are unjustifiably stigmatised by society in general
and by UK law in particular. Transsexuals in Britain are denied
basic rights and freedoms that all other citizens take for
Britain lags behind most other developed countries in its treatment
of its transsexual citizens.
Allowing post-treatment transsexuals to have their Birth
Certificates corrected, and recognising their new gender legally,
would greatly reduce the discrimination that they suffer, and would
restore most of the basic rights and freedoms that they are
Since this primer was
published UK government has produced the The Gender
Recognition Act 2004, which gained Royal Assent on 1 July 2004.
This act allows an individual who is (a) living in the other
gender, or (b) having changed gender under the law of a country or
territory outside the United Kingdom to apply for a Gender
Recognition Certificate. This certifies that the individual is
legally recognised as their chosen gender, except in specific
circumstances . The full act is available here.
Application would be made through the Gender Recognition Panal.