Children's Rights Alliance expresses concerns over 2014 Gender Recognition Bill
“The Gender Recognition Bill has not been sufficiently proofed from the perspective of children. The Oireachtas is putting its head in the sand. It’s simply not good enough that transgender children have been ignored. They are continuously experiencing problems and barriers to everyday childhood activities,” stated Tanya Ward, Chief Executive of the Children’s Rights Alliance.
At present, Ireland is the only country in the European Union that has no mechanism – either legislative or administrative – for recognising the preferred gender of transgender individuals. The Bill has been warmly welcomed for finally legislating in this area. However, it is silent on the position of children under 16 years, the Irish organisation highlighted.
The Children’s Rights Alliance has called on the Oireachtas to reconsider how the rights and needs of transgender children can be met within the State’s regime to obtain legal gender recognition. Any process must provide for the child’s right to be heard, for decisions to be made in the best interests of the child and for relevant safeguards to apply.