March 22nd, 2013

(no subject)

Fighting for legal and social recognition outside the gendered societal structure

Letter to the Government Equalities Office

I am very concerned at lack of any discernable progress following undertakings made to the trans* community by the coalition government in the run up to launch of trans* equality action plan.

I am so concerned that I am sharing this email, sent to a new contact at the GEO today.

Earlier today I tried to contact <NAME REMOVED > and was given your email address as point of contact for LGB&T Equality Action Plan.

I was in regular contact with the GEO in development process leading up to launch of supplementary trans* action plan launched in December 2011.

I am extremely concerned about lack of any discernable progress in the delivery of the pledges made by the government to the trans* community in the months leading towards the launch of that government initiative.

As you can no doubt discern from my letterhead, my core identity is non-gendered. I have no legally enforceable ‘rights’ under existing legislation that is bound within gendered terminology. The Equalities Act 2010 does not include trans* who are not transsexual and were already covered under previous legislation, and the proposed Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill was drafted in a way that pointedly excludes non-gendered and others who do not identify as M or F despite protestations of ‘gender-neutrality’.

Lynne Featherstone, as Equalities Minister, was very supportive of trans* issues and was supportive of my need to be correctly identified rather than forced to accept inappropriate gendered classification – legally, due to lack of legal recognition and lack of provision and socially, due to societal ignorance of this issue. Following last year’s government reshuffle and transfer of GEO from the Home Office to the DCMS, I have not received a single response to my communications to government ministers with Equalities portfolio (none of whom have any record of showing interest in trans* issues).  All the GEO personnel who were directly involved in trans* engagement process have now left the GEO and do not appear to have been replaced.

My parliamentary representative has asked questions on my behalf to the DCMS and the IPS and has not received a reply. These questions directly relate to my need to be correctly identified. Legitimate identity is a fundamental human right and my rights (in accordance with the UN Declaration of Human Rights) are breached in many respects.

I would like to know categorically what are the government’s intentions with regard to honouring the pledges made to the trans* community in the government’s action plan for trans* equality?

I would like to know whether the United Kingdom intends to follow the progressive policy changes enacted by the governing authorities of Australia and New Zealand and allow the use of ‘X’ as a non gender-specific category on passports for UK passport holders who do not define as male or female and currently forced to carry an identification document that misrepresents rather than affirms the identity.

I would like to know when the government intends to act upon an undertaking made within the action plan document to assist trans* into employment. The ‘bespoke’ service referenced in the document has not materialised and neither has there been a government trans* awareness campaign (in contrast to LG&B, with relatively high profile initiatives mainly connected to sport – of no use at all to trans* who are prevented from participating in most sports).


Christie Elan-Cane
Email: <REMOVED>

NON-GENDERED – Fighting for Legal Recognition

The denial of existence is the worst act of discrimination by the gendered majority against the non-gendered

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