Greening: We want to make process less intrusive
Transgender people will be able to choose their sex more easily as part of equalities reforms announced by the Government.
The changes, which will go out for consultation later this year, will make it easier for transgender people to chose their sex legally by removing the requirement for a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria and speed up the bureaucratic process.
Education Secretary Justine Greening, who is also equalities minister, said he wanted to remove the stigma faced by transpeople, who have to produce evidence that they have been in transition for at least two years before they can apply to legally change their gender.
She told Sky's Sophy Ridge on Sunday that the Government had made "huge progress" on LGBT rights in the 50 years since the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality, but there was more to be done.
"At the moment if you want to change your gender it's a very complicated process, it's quite intrusive as well and it's very bound up in going to see your GP and a whole medical process that then gets kicked off," Ms Greening said.
"What we want to do is try and streamline the process, make it easier, demedicalise it and make it less intrusive and we'll be consulting on how to do that in the autumn."
Prime Minister Theresa May earlier this week indicated she was prepared to reform the Gender Recognition Act, saying there was "still a long way to go" on rights and protections for transpeople.
Suzanna Hopwood, a member of the Stonewall trans advisory group, said: "Reform is one of the key priorities in our vision for removing the huge inequalities that trans people face in the UK. The current system is demeaning and broken.
"It's vital that this reform removes the requirements for medical evidence and an intrusive interview panel, and finally allows all trans people to have their gender legally recognised through a simple administrative process.
"That's what we'll be calling for during this consultation, and I'm looking forward to seeing the law change soon after."
It has also been announced that gay men will be allowed to donate blood in England three months after having sex.
Fears over infections led to an outright ban on gay men giving blood at the height of the Aids epidemic, but in 2011 that was changed to allow men to donate blood 12 months after having sex.
This will be reduced again in 2018 due to medical advances.

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