Transgender People and the Amendment of Formal Documentation: Matters of recognition and citizenship

Couch, Murray; Pitts, Marian; Croy, Samantha; Mulcare, Hunter; Mitchell, Anne
October 2008
Health Sociology Review;Oct2008, Vol. 17 Issue 3, p280
Academic Journal
In an online survey of transgender people conducted in Australia and New Zealand, half the respondents (50.6%) reported having made attempts to amend formal documentation to reflect their current gender identity, and that this was crucial to their sense of personal and identity recognition, as well as an affirmation of citizenship. Experiences and outcomes varied, even within the same organisation, leading to different degrees of difficulty and frustration. For gender to be changed on some documentation, the individual is required to show evidence of having had a related surgical procedure. Almost 90% of participants who had undergone surgery had also made attempts to change documentation, and a quarter of participants who had not undergone any surgical procedures had made similar attempts. Participants who had been able to successfully change their documentation experienced this as affirming of their gender, and as recognition of civil belonging.


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