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Germany Self-ID law makes gender document updates less expensive

by Edwin Chris
image via Peakpx

Germany’s Bundestag—that’s their lower house of parliament—has made a big change that’s going to make life easier for trans people within the country. Starting November 1st, the newly passed “Self-ID law” will make it simpler for folks to change their first name and gender identity on official documents. 

Transgender, intersex, and non-binary individuals have been pushing for these reforms. Imagine an expensive (upwards of 1,500) psychological assessment just to change your name and gender on records: that’s what’s been happening under the old law, but not anymore.

One lawmaker, Nyke Slawik, who’s also a trans woman, really hit the nail on the head when she said, “Our dignity is made a matter of negotiation.” It’s a relief for many who have waited patiently for this law to pass.

RELATED: Quebec adds “X” gender marker to healthcare and driver’s licenses

A close vote almost cost citizens big

But, of course, not everyone was on board with the new Self-ID law. The vote in the Bundestag was close, with 374 for and 251 against. The opposition, largely conservatives and the far-right, were vocal about their disapproval. They worry that this new law might lead to people changing their gender whenever they feel like it. 

However, it’s worth noting that the challenging medical transition process can take anywhere from months to several years, depending upon a variety of factors including age and surgical recovery/complications. Currently, no conservatives in the german parliament have been willing to go through the medical procedures required to test their thesis statement.

Sven Lehmann, the German government’s commissioner for LGBTQ issues, thinks differently from the dissenters. He believes this Self-ID law is long overdue and will make a big difference for many people. Despite all the arguments, the vote went through without needing approval from the upper house of parliament, the Bundesrat.

Sources: Attitude.co.uk, ro.co

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