The ‘trans’ umbrella term includes a broad range of definitions and specific gender identities like trans woman, trans man, genderqueer, non-binary and gender fluid. It also includes people who identify as male or female, when this is different to the gender assigned to them at birth.
Almost 75% of trans young people are diagnosed with depression, while 25% are diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. Some 20% are diagnosed with a personality disorder and 16% are diagnosed with psychosis. As a mental health and suicide prevention advocate, I am truly horrified by these statistics. It is important that GPs and other health professionals are well-trained to provide support to trans people. It is crucial that the Gender Clinic at Perth Children’s Hospital is adequately funded.
Discriminatory legislation and practices still exist in Western Australia. True marriage equality has not yet been achieved, as forced divorce laws are still in place because only a single person can apply for a gender recognition certificate.
I am working alongside trans members of the LGBTIQ community on the best ways to address the unnecessary hurdles that trans people face in having their gender identity officially recognised. I recently made a submission to the Law Reform Commission’s Review of Western Australian legislation in relation to the recognition of a person’s sex, change of sex or intersex status. The Greens support many of the recommendations made by the Commission including:
There is much to do to change public attitudes and to raise awareness of the importance of acceptance and a sense of belonging for trans Western Australians.