TGEU welcomes European Commission Thematic Report on Trans & Intersex
June 15th 2012
The European Commission published the Thematic report on Discrimination against trans and intersex people on the grounds of sex, gender identity and gender expression (authored by Silvan Agius, ILGA-Europe Policy Director and Prof. Christa Tobler, Basel & Leiden University). The document explores challenges trans people are facing and how EU law on sex discrimination and general principles of non-discrimination and equality apply also to trans people. It flags up legal gaps in the protection mechanisms and how EU case law has been awarded and interpreted. TGEU welcomes the publication of the report.
This report has been highly awaited since the EU commits in its Strategy for equality between women and men 2010-2015 committed to study the ‘specific issues pertaining to sex discrimination in relation to gender identity’ Justice-Commissioner Reding repeatedly stated in answers to Questions from the European Parliament (May 2011/ Feb 2012) that the Commission ‘recognises the importance of supporting the promotion of equality for transgender people’. Now, with the report at hands, it is time for the Commission to prepare the promised follow-up and provide concrete steps.
Based on this expertise, TGEU calls upon the European Commission to take up action to significantly improve the situation of trans people in the European Union. The report shows that much can and in fact has to be done to combat discrimination of trans and intersex people in the European Union. The report is an important step in that direction, but concrete measures have to follow.
Julia Ehrt, TGEU Executive Director comments: “The Commission needs to unite its efforts and legal texts, giving the direction and define commitment providing thus clarity for national policy makers, lawyers and trans people in Europe. Trans issues need to be featured more prominently in the work of the Commission and existing EU Gender Equality legislation vis-a-vis transgender clarification. Implementation in all member states, such as the principles of non-discrimination in the areas of employment and access to goods and services, has to become a reality.”
The report is currently only available in English but will be made available soon in French and German.
Transgender Europe – TGEU is an Europe-wide umbrella organisation working for the advancement of the human rights of all trans people in Europe.