Name Change Practice in Armenia Without Pathologisation
First name change applications without pathologisation have been granted in Yerevan, Armenia. On Human Rights Day, December 10, two trans individuals were able to have their name change upon application without having to provide a mental health diagnosis. The diagnosis and the requirement of three witnesses for a name change has been dropped by the Civil Acts Registration Office of the Ministry of Justice, according to the NGO “Right Side”.
“Right Side” has been advocating for simplified procedures for a change of name and gender marker, supporting the two applicants. The human rights NGO praises the decisions for their great symbolic value as a precedent in Armenia.
TGEU congratulates the trans community and everyone who contributed to this important development.
“Trans people have a right to have their name changed in a quick, transparent, accessible manner, respecting their right to self-determination. The activists behind this success have proven vision and persistence. We look forward for a proper law to follow up on this welcome change in practice”, comments Dinah Bons.
“Right Side” statement below:
On December 10, 2018, the International Day of Human Rights, for the first time, the Civil Acts Registration Office of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia has confirmed the application of two transgender people for legal name change without a psychological conclusion of being transgender, which is not a requirement for legal name change from now on. It should be reminded that in the past, the Civil Acts Registration Office of MOJ of RA required 3 witness of an applicant to confirm the name. However, as a result of the effective collaboration of the staff of the “Right Side” human rights defender NGO with the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia, the requirement for 3 witnesses was withdrawn in 2017. In 2018, “Right Side” human rights defender NGO has set a task for further facilitation of the legal
name change procedure. As a part of advocacy strategy 2 trans people applied 2 months ago to the Civil Acts Registration Office of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia for their legal name change without a psychological conclusion. The applications of two trans people were confirmed which is a precedent for Armenia. This step taken on the Day of Human Rights is a great symbolic victory, which for sure ease legal name change process of transgender people by changing the legal practice. “Right Side” human rights defender NGO congratulates the transgender community in Armenia for this achievement and expresses its gratitude to the Civil Acts Registration Office of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia for the cooperation.