Spain passes first draft of self-ID gender bill

The Spanish government on Tuesday (June 29) approved a draft bill to let anyone over the age of 14 change gender on official records, without a psychological assessment or two years of hormone therapy, which was previously required.

The draft bill will now go to a public hearing before another cabinet reading, then a vote in parliament.

Equality Minister Irene Montero called it "a giant step forward".

But some activists and families of transgender children say the "self-ID" law - which would require parental approval for 14-16 year-olds - doesn't go far enough, since it leaves out younger children, and those aged 12-13 would still need a court process.

Aida Chacon is the mother of a non-binary child:

"We have trans minors in our families and most of them are left out of this law. I think this is unfair because just as we know, aged three or four, or when we start to reason, who we are; in the same way they are more than aware of their identity at three years of age."

Some feminist groups oppose the bill as regressive.

The draft bill, which also bans LGBT conversion therapies, will allow trans people to declare their gender by filling out a form at a registry office then confirming it three months later.

It puts Spain among two dozen countries that want to decouple gender-choice from medical procedures.

And if passed, would make it the largest European country to introduce self-identification.

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