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Ombudsman for Equality publishes report on the status of gender minorities

Ombudsman for Equality publishes report on the status of gender minorities

According to a report commissioned by the Ombudsman for Equality, gender minorities are an invisible quantity in Finnish society, legislation and official practices. Gender minorities are not even specifically mentioned in anti-discrimination legislation. Various officials and organisations representing gender minorities were interviewed for the report.

 

Gender identity and gender expression come in a multitude of forms, and not everyone can be unambiguously defined as a woman or a man. Gender minorities include transgender people, transvestites and intersex persons. Gender minorities are often confused with sexual minorities such as homosexuals and bisexuals.

The diversity of gender is also poorly known among professionals in the health care, social services and education sectors. Rapid planning and deployment of professional further education is vital.

The report highlights not only the general lack of awareness and factual information but also several problems faced by gender minorities, including discrimination; injustices in the Trans Act on legal recognition of the gender such as the sterility requirement; population register and name matters; health insurance compensation practices; outdated disease classifications; and care practices for intersex children.

The gender minority situation has recently become a current topic in the international context too. The report incorporates the recommendations of the Committee of Ministers and Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe on measures to combat discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity. These recommendations may be used to gauge Finland's status and to gain guidelines for improving the status of gender minorities.

The report on the status of gender minorities (in Finnish): Selvitys sukupuolivähemmistöjen asemasta.pdf (676.5 kt )

For more information, please contact:
Pirkko Mäkinen, the Ombudsman for Equality
+385 9 1607 4465

Minna Lundell-Kiuru, Senior Officer
+358 9 1607 4455

27.03.2012