September 13, 2011
Rights Group Criticizes Dutch Transgender Rules
Kilian Melloy READ TIME: 1 MIN.
Human Rights Watch is criticizing the Dutch government for infringing the rights of transgender people by refusing to register their new gender on official documents until they have had sex change surgery and been sterilized.
The criticism by the respected rights organization deals a blow to the image of the Netherlands as a haven of tolerance and acceptance for minorities and a front-runner in transgender rights.
In a report published Tuesday, the group urges authorities to drop the requirement for surgery and sterilization before new gender can be officially recognized, saying it "causes anguish for transgender people who have not had the required surgery."
A Justice Ministry spokesperson was not immediately available for comment.
Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.