Gender identity discrimination : a form of sexual apartheid

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Almeida, Vera Martins Peres de
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Our dissertation explores the definitions of sex, gender, transgender and gender identity presenting how the Law, other disciplines and Western societies have considered and should consider them. It discusses the legal and social consequences of sex and of the gender identity conflict, analysing the discrimination of transgendered people (in particular transsexuals) to conclude that the extremely discriminatory behaviours they are exposed to can be regarded as sexual apartheid. It describes the European backdrop, the several reform policies, legislative developments and a number of trials before the higher Courts to call for a more flexible attitude towards legal and social inclusion. It then proposes a multidisciplinary approach in tackling gender identity based discrimination by pondering larger social change by action of agency, education and training, and media and the arts to arrive at the legal innovations that comprise equality legislation comprehensive of a person’s gender, health care services, legal recognition and protection against discrimination in the new gender role. It finally concludes that, while these borders of human sexuality may only, allegedly, concern a minority of the world’s population, they represent an urgent and forward-thinking human rights debate and that, to reach substantial equality, the discrimination attached to it cannot be dealt with in any other than a holistic and integrated way.
Second semester University: Université Libre de Bruxelles
gender discrimination, gender identity, sex change, sex role, transsexualism, Europe