The Government will leave the age to freely change sex at 16

The LGTBI-Trans law will receive on Monday, the eve of Pride, the support of the Council of Ministers, which will send it to Congress for approval

Alfonso Torres

The LGTBI-Trans bill, which this month will begin the process for its approval in Congress, will allow any resident in Spain to freely change their sex in the Civil Registry from the age of 16.

The Council of Ministers, at its meeting on Monday, will definitively approve the bill and send it to the Legislature for rapid processing. The government text will maintain 16 years, the age defended by the Ministry of Equality, as the minimum from which any citizen can exercise gender self-determination in Spain, without restrictions, controls or any permission from third parties.

The Government, therefore, will not pay attention to the main objection that the General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) raised to the LGTBI-Trans draft bill when last April its plenary session accepted the exercise of gender self-determination, but claimed that the future norm would limit it to those over 18 years of age.

The majority of members of the governing body of the judges accepted that citizens can change their registered sex from the age of 12 -as allowed by the Executive document-, but considered it essential that the modification be authorized by a judge while the interested party is between 12 and 17 years.

The Judiciary defends that judicial supervision at these ages is the only formula that guarantees the protection of minors and respect for their rights, since the change of official sex would not occur until the magistrate verified the maturity of the adolescent and the firmness of her desire for transsexuality.

In short, the bill that will come out of the Council of Ministers on Monday will allow anyone over 12 years of age to change their name and sex in the Civil Registry. From 12 to 13 years old, judicial authorization will be required. From 14 to 15, the change does not require judicial protection, but it does require the support of the parents or the prosecutor for the official request. And from the age of 16 the decision will be completely free. It will be achieved simply by asking. There will be no need for a witness statement to corroborate the transsexual situation or the medical reports and the two years of hormonal treatment that are now required. Minors under 12 years of age will not be able to change their registered sex, but they can change their name to the one they consider more appropriate to their reality.

The end of a pulse

This project, in addition to the depathologization and liberation of sex change, recognizes and guarantees a long list of rights to LGTBI groups. It prohibits and sanctions up to 150,000 euros the so-called reparative therapies, will guarantee by law the public financing of assisted reproduction techniques for lesbians, bisexuals and trans with the ability to conceive, authorizes the registration as legal parent of the partner of a lesbian or bisexual mother , and recognizes and provides protection to victims of intra-gender violence (in same-sex couples), among many other measures.

The 'Trans law' will leave Congress on the eve of Pride Day, just one year after the Government validated its first draft and after at least a year and a half of avoiding a real political minefield, with fights between government partners and with strong external questions such as the Judiciary.

Its main promoter, Irene Montero, until she achieved the support for the text of the entire Executive, had to maintain a very hard pulse with the then first vice president, Carmen Calvo, who, like a good part of the classic feminist movement, opposes gender self-determination of the trans In the end, the closed support of the LGTBI movement for the arguments of the head of Equality favored Pedro Sánchez on his side.

Pride 2022 is celebrated amid a genuine legislative commitment to LGTBI rights. The arrival of the 'Trans law' in Parliament is joined by the definitive approval (next Thursday by the plenary session of Congress) and the entry into force of the 'Zerolo law', the rule that will make it possible to more effectively prosecute speeches and crimes of hatred and discrimination of minorities, among other reasons for sexual choice.

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