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UK government could deem Scottish gender recognition certificates invalid

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Transgender people in Scotland will have to apply for a UK gender recognition certificate in order to be recognised outside of the country under changes expected to be made by ministers.

In a written statement shared on 9 January, Kemi Badenoch, the Minister for Women and Equalities, announced a review into “the list of approved overseas countries and territories” in relation to which international gender certificates the UK recognises. “There are now some countries and territories on the list who have made changes to their systems since then and would not now be considered to have equivalently rigorous systems,” she continued. “It should not be possible for a person who would not satisfy the criteria to obtain UK legal gender recognition to use the overseas recognition route to obtain a UK Gender Recognition Certificate.

This would damage the integrity and credibility of the process of the Gender Recognition Act.” The list was last updated in 2011, when Montenegro and Latvia were removed.

Badenoch shared that her department is “finalising details of overseas countries and territories to be removed from the list” through “a thorough checking system to verify our understanding of each overseas system in question.” It comes after SMPs voted by 86 votes to 39 last month in favour of self-identification, meaning trans people will no longer need to be medically diagnosed with gender dysphoria before obtaining a gender recognition certificate as they would in the rest of the UK.

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