Identity recognition without the knife: Towards a gender recognition ordinance for Hong Kong's transsexual people
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This paper proposes gender recognition legislation for transsexual people in Hong Kong that is comprehensive (extending beyond marriage) and inclusive (applying to all transsexual people, regardless of medical treatment received). It notes that hormonal and surgical treatments are not medically necessary for many transsexual people, whose distress is often caused by the failure of others to recognise their experienced gender, rather than by concerns about anatomy. The paper then examines the importance of gender recognition in transsexual people's lives, and examines the health and human rights arguments against refusing legal gender recognition, and against preconditions for gender recognition that require transsexual people to undergo medical procedures. Particular attention is paid to requirements involving sterilisation. The paper concludes by advocating a Gender Recognition Ordinance for Hong Kong along the lines of the UK Gender Recognition Act, referred to in the Court of Final Appeal decision in the 'W' case as a 'compelling model' for Hong Kong.
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