COPENHAGEN – Denmark on Wednesday scrapped a law requiring people to be sterilized as part of the sex change procedure before they could be legally recognized as another gender.
As of Sept. 1, all Danes over 18 will be able to apply for a legal gender change simply by stating that they belong to the other sex, after which they must complete a six-month “reflection period.” They would no longer have to undergo a physical sex change procedure before obtaining a new gender on their identification card.
The Danish government said the move could be seen as part of an international trend toward “easing the conditions for legal sex change(s).” Denmark’s personal identification number is needed for everything from salary payments to issuing a passport.
Amnesty International said in February that in many European countries, people can change legal gender only if they are diagnosed with a mental disorder, undergo medical procedures such as hormone treatments and surgery resulting in sterilization, and must prove that they are single. In doing so, these countries are violating the rights of some 1.5 million transgender people, the group said.