The Council of Ministers has approved the Trans Law, a project of the Ministry of Equality that wants to introduce “gender self-determination” into Spanish legislation for the first time, which is a concept that has sectors of feminism at war. This means that a person will be able to officially change their sex with the sole declaration of it in the Civil Registry and without being forced to provide medical reports or witnesses or having to undergo, as now, a two-year hormone period. It will be like this from the age of 16, although it can be achieved much earlier with the help of parents. With 14 and 15 years, parental consent is required and with 12 and 13 years, the intervention of a judge is required.

This is so because transsexuality is depathologized, that is, these people will no longer be considered “sick”. It is the reason that justifies that no psychiatrist or a third party intervenes in the process by which a person processes before the administration his change from man to woman or from woman to man.

In its passage through the second round of the Council of Ministers, on the eve of LGTBI Pride, only “technical changes” have been introduced but “nothing substantial” has been touched on the text that was seen just a year ago. Now the bill will be sent to the Congress of Deputies, where it is expected that an intense debate will be opened again for what is and what is not in the norm.

And it is that the Trans Law has always been surrounded by controversy because gender self-determination unleashed an intense war within feminism, which continues today, and also between the PSOE and United We Can, now calmer. That battle ended up being won by the Minister of Equality, Irene Montero, over the then First Vice President, Carmen Calvo, thanks to the final intervention of Pedro Sánchez to unclog the law. A month later Calvo was dismissed in a Government remodeling.

A year later, the bill finally gets the green light from the Council of Ministers and ends a tortuous transition inside and outside the Government that has lasted for about 18 months. It has been a time in which enormous resistance and strong criticism have been encountered from the classic feminist sectors, historically more closely related to the PSOE, who denounce the “erasure of women”, an open door to law fraud and a danger to minors. .

In the same way, the norm also received unanimously a very critical report from the CGPJ after its examination. For example, he asked that the possibility of changing sex without judicial approval be raised to 18 years of age. However, the Ministry of Equality has ignored these observations and has only changed technical issues of the wording in the text. Both those provided in that report by the judges and those that the Council of State has also made.

On the other hand, the Trans Law has a substantial part dedicated to the rights of the LGTBI collective, with measures such as the prohibition of conversion therapies, as well as a system of sanctions to guarantee their protection and non-discrimination.

The spirit that guides the Trans Law establishes that people who change their gender must be treated based on that identity in all areas. For example, in the use of bathrooms and changing rooms in educational centers; in sports or in prisons.

The project of the Law for the real and effective equality of trans people and for the guarantee of the rights of LGTBI people merges two texts that were going to go separately but that finally go together. That is why the law covers a multitude of issues related to the LGTBI collective. Some highlights are as follows:

Reconversion, aversion and counterconditioning therapies, in any form, intended to modify the person’s sexual orientation or identity or gender expression will be completely prohibited and heavily fined.

Lesbian, bisexual and single women will once again have access to assisted human reproduction techniques after 7 years without access to this right in the National Health System.

Lesbian and bisexual women will be considered biological mothers even if only one of them has given birth. Until it comes into force, the non-biological mother had to go through an adoption process.

The entire package relating to foreigners disappears from the law, when in the draft it was possible to change the mention of sex and name on the residence card or work permit.

Fundamental rights for intersex people are legislated for the first time, such as the right not to suffer any mutilation at birth or not to have to be registered in a sex that they do not have defined during the first months of life.

The inclusion in the basic curriculum of knowledge and respect for sexual, gender and family diversity as an objective in all educational stages, as well as training in the subject for all teachers. Sexual and reproductive education and STI prevention programs will be promoted, with special consideration for HIV.

Equality wanted to include a third box to recognize the “non-binary” gender, for those who do not feel they are neither men nor women. But pressure from the PSOE made it disappear from the draft. However, the debate on the third box will surely be reopened during the processing of the text in Congress and the Senate, where the law has a lot of support but also a great desire to include improvements.

There is a system of infractions and sanctions in order to protect LGTBI people against discrimination or violence. Whether in the workplace, in sports or leisure.

– Minor: Fines of 200 to 2,000 euros. Harassing a person because of their sexual orientation or causing damage to property belonging to the LGTBI community, such as premises or license plates. Likewise, those who do not collaborate in the investigative work of the inspection services will be sanctioned with this amount.

– Serious: Fines of 2,001 to 10,000 euros. Do not withdraw the vexatious expressions on websites or social networks of the provider of an information society service, incorporate clauses in contracts that are discriminatory or vexatious; the promotion or tolerance of discriminatory labor practices and the absolute refusal to collaborate with an inspection task.

– Very serious: Fines of 10,001 to 150,000 euros. Those who harass and discriminate will be sanctioned in this category. For example, with criteria or conditions that prevent access to employment or, for example, if a trans person or a gay couple is denied rental housing. Likewise, this chapter includes the refusal to provide assistance to an LGTBI person; the dissemination or promotion of conversion methods or therapies; or the preparation, use or dissemination in educational centers of textbooks and teaching materials that discriminate against this group.

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