Scotland Announces GRA Reform Proposal



I don’t know a lot about anything, especially not legislation and Parliaments. So read on with that in mind! But it looks a lot like Scotland has just announced its GRA reform proposal and its looking pretty self ID from where I’m standing. Pretty good stuff, right?

You can read the full document for yourself here, but on my initial read for rushing this piece out in time to be super relevant and hit the algorithm good; it’s not bad. It removes the need to have anything signed off by a doctor, it opens it up to 16 year olds and the wait is cut down significantly from 2 years to 3 months. Though it is still an arbitrary wait nonetheless which could certainly be improved by simply not existing at all. Also, you don’t have to have actually been born in Scotland to do it; just live there predominately. You could move to Scotland for say I dunno… University… and come back with a brand spanking new (almost) self-ID’d legal sex. Pretty banging, if you’re into getting a GRA at all.

Yes, I have trapped you all in yet another of my abolitionist rants. You cannot escape me and my never ending demand to abolish legal sex recognition altogether! For good reason, I think. It seems, at least in England, that transphobes are pushing for the GRA to be the ultimate decider of your rights as a trans person. A recent leak of documents from England’s EHRC via Ben Hunte for Vice seems to also confirm this is the way things are heading, though the EHRC deny such documents exist. When we’re talking about legislation such as this which is effectively just going to end up as a list of one specific minority group, we have to imagine the worst way it could be used. It’s all well and good if today’s politicians in Scotland are super trans inclusive but we can’t bank on that in the future and a list of trans people in the hands of transphobes could be extremely dangerous.

It probably won’t be, things generally tend more positive, but there’s a definite potential for it to be. That to me is enough to oppose a GRA system and much wider the system that made the GRA necessary in the first place; the UK’s very binary system of legal sex recognition. It serves absolutely no function in our country other than to exclude non-binary people from legal recognition. It used to do pension and retirement ages but I’m pretty sure they got made equal already. Most every law is already written in a gender neutral sense or should be because we should all be protected equally from bad shit happening to us. I can’t stress enough that its SOLE FUNCTION currently is to exclude non-binary people. That is literally all it does.

Of course, this is just a proposal and will be debated and politician’d about for a while yet I imagine. None of this is set in stone. My overall conclusion is it is great for binary trans people but simply doesn’t go far enough in addressing issues trans people as a whole face, especially the non-binary friends. For me this feels like they’re attempting to assimilate us into a system that just doesn’t work, rather than tearing it down and building something new that does work.

6/10. Room for improvement, Scotland.

Gemma Stone
Gemma Stone is a transgender writer who has been covering the rise of transphobic hate campaigning in the UK. She has written hundreds of articles dissecting aspects of transphobia including debunking blatant disinformation. She is very tired and trying her best, and hopefully having a positive impact on such a beautiful community.

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