Trans Rights in Argentina
In the twenty-first century, civil rights campaigns by transgender activists and their allies have increasingly sought to introduce legal recognition and protection to transgender people. This has resulted in various examples of new legislation, most of it only partially satisfying and requiring further amendment. No single national instance can stand in for this legislative process, which is still very much ongoing and acute. Yet the Gender Identity Law that was passed in Argentina in 2012 deserves highlighting as a point of comparison. It is one of the most comprehensive laws of its kind, allowing people to change their legal gender without facing barriers such as hormone therapy, surgery or psychiatric diagnosis.
A striking political fact is that this law was approved unanimously in the Argentinian Senate. It came after a series of Supreme Court victories in the country had paved the way for its introduction. One year after the law was passed, a six-year-old girl who was designated male at birth became the first transgender child to have her name officially changed on her identity documents. Because of the Gender Identity Law, as well as the creation of alternative schools and the first transgender community centre in Latin America, the World Health Organization cited Argentina as an example for providing transgender rights.
In Belgium, the reformed law concerning transgender people, which came into effect on the first of January, 2018, has taken crucial steps forward in restoring physical integrity to trans people and facilitating administrative procedures to adults and emancipated minors. But it also leaves many important questions unresolved. And the rights of intersex people are still waiting to be addressed.
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