HRC 52 Scottish Trans statement to the United Kingdom's UPR outcome

Published on March 27, 2023

Human Rights Council – 52nd Session

Outcome of the Universal Periodic Review- United Kingdom

Federation for Women and Family Planning


Thank you President,

The Federation makes this statement on behalf of Scottish Trans.

We welcome the numerous recommendations made to the United Kingdom on providing for legal gender recognition on the basis of self-determination, and regret the government’s decision to note them.

The UK’s Gender Recognition Act, which sets out the process by which trans people can gain legal gender recognition, was passed almost 20 years ago. Whilst at the time it was considered world-leading, it has now fallen far behind international best practice and human rights standards. This is because it requires a trans person to have a psychiatric diagnosis of gender dysphoria, to provide medical evidence, and evidence of living in their gender for two years to a tribunal. It also doesn’t allow anyone under 18 to obtain legal gender recognition, nor does it provide for legal recognition for non-binary people.

In December, the Scottish Parliament passed legislation to reform the Gender Recognition Act in Scotland. The Bill would have meant that trans men and women, from the age of 16, would have been able to be legally recognised using a process of self-determination. This would have been a significant improvement, but the Bill was blocked by the UK Government.

We call on the UK Government to revise the Gender Recognition Act. The government must revoke the order that is blocking the Bill passed in Scotland from becoming law, and they should introduce legislation that would also allow trans people in England & Wales to obtain legal gender recognition by the same process.


Thank you.