Trans campaigners prepare for first Scottish Parliament debate on GRA reform


MSPs will be urged to support reforms to the Gender Recognition Act by LGBT campaigners ahead of the first stage debate on the legislation at Holyrood.

Scottish Trans, part of the Equality Network, is set to host an event for supporters of the reforms outside of the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh on Thursday afternoon.

There will be speeches from 12.45pm onwards, including from transgender people who will be affected by the reforms, with SNP, Scottish Greens and Scottish Labour MSPs also contributing.

READ MORE: What will Scotland’s Gender Recognition Act Bill contain, and what does it all mean?

Two local artists, Latoy and Evay, will also create a visual piece for the event focusing on the theme of recognition.

It comes after the majority of the Scottish Parliament’s Equalities, Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee recommended that MSPs support the general principles of the bill. The two Tory MSPs on the committee, Pam Gosal and Rachael Hamilton, declined to back the reforms.

The Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill aims to make it easier and less traumatic for transgender people in Scotland to acquire a Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC).

It would remove the medical requirement and panel process and instead allow trans people to self-identify. They would only have to live in their acquired gender for three months instead of two years before obtaining a GRC, and a declaration would be made in front of a notary public or a justice of the peace.

It would also mean the document would be awarded by the Registrar General instead of a medical panel. The age for applying for a GRC would be lowered from 18 to 16.

Vic Valentine, Manager of Scottish Trans said: “Trans people and our families, friends and allies are coming together at the Scottish Parliament to send a powerful and hopeful message to MSPs across the Holyrood chamber ahead of the debate and vote on the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill at stage one.

“A vote for this bill is a vote to improve the lives of trans men and women across Scotland. The current law means that people have to go through an intrusive, complex and stressful process to update the sex on their birth certificate, and be recognised as who they really are.

“We hope that all MSPs, just as the large majority of the Equalities, Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee did after taking extensive evidence on the bill, will decide that voting for this bill and agreeing that the process should be made simpler and fairer is the right thing to do.”

The bill is expected to pass the first stage with SNP MSPs whipped to vote in favour of the reforms, as it was a manifesto commitment for the party at the Holyrood 2021 election.

John Mason, SNP MSP for Glasgow Shettleston, was recently disciplined by the party over his stance on abortion and buffer zones, which could lead to a more serious sanction if he votes against the GRA reforms, and potentially losing the whip.

READ MORE: Human rights body finds no ‘concrete’ concerns over GRA reform impact

The Scottish Greens, Scottish Labour and Scottish LibDems have also committed to the reforms.

While Scottish Tory MSPs will have a free vote on the issue, they are expected to oppose the legislation.

The bill has been delayed and dogged by controversy, had two lengthy consultations on the reforms launched and analysed, and now will finally make it to the Holyrood chamber on Thursday.


Share this news on your Fb,Twitter and Whatsapp

File source

NY Press News:Latest News Headlines
NY Press News||Health||New York||USA News||Technology||World News

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button