Sunday 27 May 2018

Passport Service changed gender on 25 passports in 2014 News Desk

Twenty-five people had their gender changed on their passports in 2014, according to the Passport Service.

The figures were revealed ahead of the Gender Recognition Bill (2014) due to be debate in the summer.

If made into law, it will allow individuals to change their sexual identity on their birth certificates.

In 2010, the Government acknowledged it had breached the human rights of transgender people by not allowing them to alter their gender on their birth certs following a 2002 ruling by the European Court of Human Rights on the issue.

Under the bill, an application for a new birth certificate will require a supporting statement by an individual’s primary doctor that they have or are transitioning to a new gender.

Last year, the Passport office issued 25 passports to applicants who had changed their gender, an increase of seven over the previous year 2013. 

Those seeking to have their gender changed on their passports can do so under the Section 11 of the Passport Act, which allows “Irish citizens, who have undergone, or are undergoing, treatment or procedures or both to alter the applicant’s sexual characteristics and physical appearance to those of the opposite sex” to apply to have a passport issued under their new name, and if appropriate, the new sex.

“The applicant must provide medical evidence from a registered medical practitioner to confirm the medical treatment and in the case where a new name is being used, they must provide evidence of usage of the new name,” said a spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Affairs.

The Transgender Equality Network Ireland said the increase in people changing their gender on their passports was a very positive development.

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