May 15, 2021

Six parties register the Trans Law in Congress to overcome the lack of agreement in the Government

The Trans Law starts from this Wednesday a path parallel to that of the Government. The parliamentary groups Más País, ERC, Compromís, Equo, CUP, Nueva Canarias and Junts per Catalunya have registered it in the form of a bill in Congress as an alternative to the Council of Ministers and to highlight the null progress of the norm in the Executive. As some of these parties announced in a joint statement, last Friday they committed “to the rights of trans people” to register it if “at the latest on Monday, March 15” there was no “clear and verifiable gesture” in favor of the law, that has unleashed a dispute between the PSOE and United We Can.

Calvo stops the Trans Law because "not ready" before a new attempt by Equality to take it to the Council of Ministers

Calvo stops the Trans Law because “it is not prepared” for a new attempt by Equality to take it to the Council of Ministers

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The step taken by the parties in Congress comes in response to the hunger strike that began seven days ago by several activists, including Mar Cambrollé, the president of the Trans Platform, and mothers of trans children, who gave an ultimatum to the groups until they registered the law in the lower house “so that it begins its journey and is debated with light and stenographers in the representative body of the citizenry,” they declared.

Cambrollé has shown its appreciation to the parties at the gates of Congress and together with representatives of the groups and has described the day as “historic day for the rights of trans people.” The activist has trusted that the rest of the groups, including United We Can and the PSOE, “have coherence to respond to the needs of trans people.” The rule, Cambrollé continued, “not only comes to recognize us as equal, but to repair the damage that the State has perpetrated by omission or action by denying us basic rights.

The parties have also celebrated on Twitter the registration of the bill: “For the dignity and rights of trans people, we defend trans law in Congress,” ERC has written. “We have just registered the Trans Law together with Confluencia Trans to unblock this reform that was a government commitment and a historical demand of trans people. This is only the beginning of the process but we are taking another step to ensure that # HabráLeyTrans”, has said the senator of Más Madrid Eduardo Rubiño.

The law registered in Congress expands on some points the text drafted by Equality. Among other things, it provides that the registration rectification of people in relation to sex can be chosen from four options: man, woman, non-binary person or left blank. The draft of Irene Montero’s department was limited to providing that the mention of sex could be omitted at the request of the person concerned in the official documents, but not in the registry. It also recognizes that foreigners can modify their legal sex, but provided they prove the impossibility of doing so in their countries, something that is also modified in the registered law proposal so that only the “express declaration” is needed.

The Ministry of Equality has made two unsuccessful attempts to bring it together with the LGTBI law to the Council of Ministers since the first work meeting took place on January 25 with the draft of the standard between Irene Montero and the first vice president, Carmen Calvo. The PSOE argued that “it is not yet ready” and that it suffers from “lack of legal security”, while from Equality they accused the Socialists of “blocking” the processing after not having received “any proposal to change” the text, prepared together with the trans groups, they explained then.

The center of the debate within the Government is on gender self-determination, which implies the elimination of the current medical requirements so that a trans person can modify their legal sex. The Equality proposal is very similar to the presentation that all groups supported in Congress in 2019 and stipulates that the legal sex change is based solely on the “express declaration.” However, socialists consider that some certification is necessary beyond the “mere will” of the person.

A little over a month ago, Calvo’s department announced that he was studying the laws present in other countries to offer an alternative that is yet to be specified. From the vice-presidency they pointed out a little more than 15 days ago that the norm is missing “to finish adjusting” some issues. In Equality they pointed out then that “we cannot send the message to LGTBI people that their rights are blocked and they can wait.”

However, the issue not only raises controversy between Podemos and the PSOE, but is the subject of a deep and virulent debate in the feminist movement. One sector considers that these laws have “harmful consequences” for women’s rights, while another supports the approval of the norm in alliance with trans groups, who consider current medical requirements pathologizing.


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