THE Minister of Equality Irene Montero, has submitted a draft bill that is set to transform Spain’s LGBTQ rights.
The proposed bill will allow transgender people to legally change their name and gender on official documents without medical consent.
In previous incarnations of the gender swap laws, anyone wishing to legally change their sex must have a written letter from a doctor diagnosing a condition called gender dysphoria.
However the new bill is set to scrap this, and as long as the subject is over the age of 16 and carries a sworn statement, they will be allowed to change their gender on forms such as their DNI or with the Spanish authorities.
The bill also proposes that 16 becomes the legal age limit for a person to begin hormone treatment, a process to medically alter the body to become the opposite sex.
The document was created by the Ministry of Equality, led by Montero, and comprising of more than 20 different trans and LGBTQ groups, as part of an agreement between the PSOE and Unidas Podemos after the 2019 elections.
The changes to the law have been met with criticism from women’s rights group, who claim the process of simplifying the procedure takes away from the existing rights and experience of women.
PSOE party members have also resisted the changes, stating that giving people the right to self identify will create “ambiguous and legally insecure loopholes in the current system”.
The bill will also extend to other areas of transgender rights, such as legal guardians for minors wishing to transition, the recognition of non-binary people and the ability to compete in sporting events under the newly assigned gender.
Prisons will also be handed trans specific rights, allowing inmates who identify as the opposite sex access to all the benefits of their chosen gender.
Workplaces will receive incentives to hiring trans people who traditionally have difficulty finding employment, and expats will have access to the same laws, ‘regardless of administrative situation.’
The Ministry admits that the bill has a long way to go but Montero is confident that it will bring Spain on trend with other trans laws around the world.
The bill is expected to be finalised and put before congress mid to late February.