Transgender persons and family life : the issues of sterilisation and loss of child custody rights

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Ramos, Marta : Pallos de Azevedo Pascoal
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This thesis deals with the compatibility of requirements to access legal gender recognition with international human rights law, in particular the pre-condition to be rendered permanently infertile and the possibility of losing child custody rights of biological children who were born before the application for legal gender recognition. Through the analysis of relevant European jurisprudence, domestic and international legislation, international declarations and statements and, with a personal input provided by interviews conducted with relevant stakeholders, this thesis provides an overview of the current legal status of transgender persons. In addition, given the lack of information available, through comparisons with parallel situations, namely with documented cases of Roma women sterilised and of homosexual parents‟ loss of child custody rights, it provides a clear portrait of the constraints that such requirements pose on transgender persons‟ full enjoyment and exercise of human rights. The principal conclusions to be drawn is that legislation imposing sterilisation as precondition to access legal gender recognition violate one‟s right to found a family, to family life, to physical integrity, to the highest attainable standard of health and to consent or refuse medical treatment. Legislation requiring the person to be unmarried/divorced or domestic practices forcing transgender parents‟ to waive their parental rights in order to have their legal gender recognised violate the parent and child‟s right to family life and the child‟s rights not to be separated and to maintain contact with her/his parents.
Second semester University: Lund University.
child custody, family, transgender