TGEU call for action/support – “Stop Trans Pathologization 2012″

From Helen G at Bird of Paradox

August 29, 2009

STP-2012 logoTGEU has issued a statement in support of the international campaign by the Trans Depathologization Network for the removal of the Gender Identity Disorder category from the international diagnosis manuals (the DSM and the ICD).

The five demands of the STP-2012 campaign are as follows:

  1. The retirement of GID from the international diagnosis manuals (their next versions DSM-V and ICD-11)
  2. The retirement of sex mention in the official documents
  3. The abolition of the binary normalization treatments to intersex people
  4. Free access to hormonal treatments and surgery (without the psychiatric monitoring)
  5. The fight against transphobia: working for education, social and labour insertion for trans people

In addition, TGEU is calling for these additional actions:

  • The creation of an alternative non-pathologizing category in the ICD 11, recognizing that our gender identities are not mental health disorders while still enabling hormonal and surgical medical assistance to be provided for those trans-people who seek such assistance.
  • The funding of hormonal and surgical medical assistance for trans people by national health insurance.
  • The creation of processes for changing legal name and gender without compulsory treatment or any form of diagnosis.

TGEU also adds:

In 2008 the Steering Committee of TGEU already published a declaration, stating “that the stigmatization, which in part is grounded in the mistaken assumption that gender variance is prima facie a medical disorder, is discriminatory” and demanding that “[a]ny revision of the DSM and the ICD must be carried out with full compliance to the Yogyakarta Principles on the Application of International Human Rights Law in relation to Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity” (see Yogyakarta Principle 18 “Protection from Medical Abuse”).

The Steering Committee of TGEU very much welcome and support the position taken by the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Thomas Hammarberg, in his Issue Paper “Human Rights and Gender Identity”:

“The first aspect in discussing health care for transgender persons is the existence of international and national medical classifications defining transsexuality as a mental disorder… Such classifications may become an obstacle to the full enjoyment of human rights by transgender people, especially when they are applied in a way to restrict the legal capacity or choice for medical treatment… Alternative classifications should be explored in close consultation with transgender persons and their organisations. From a human rights and health care perspective no mental disorder needs to be diagnosed in order to give access to treatment for a condition in need of medical care.”

Campaign Background:

The campaign “Stop Trans Pathologization: Goal 2012″ of the Trans Depathologization Network aims at initiating and monitoring actions directed against the “Gender Identity Disorder” category in international classifications of diseases, especially focusing.

The revision of the DSM IV will finish in 2012 with the publication of the new DSM V. The Network has intensified its actions, and decided to have coordinated demonstrations and other actions demanding the depathologization of trans identities in as many cities as possible around the globe always in October until the year 2012.

A joint action among French and Spanish trans groups in 2007 was the starting point of the Trans Depathologization Network. Since then they have broadened their scope and have continued organizing demonstrations against trans pathologization in every October. In 2008, already 11 European cities participated in joint actions. This year the set date for demonstrations in cities worldwide is October 17th. To date, more than 80 trans organizations and allies from more than 40 cities in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe have confirmed their participation or expressed their support and many more are expected to join in over the next few weeks.

Click here to download a PDF (in English) of the TGEU’s supporting statement

4 Responses to “TGEU call for action/support – “Stop Trans Pathologization 2012″”

  1. Andrea Says:

    Interesting, considering Stephen Whittle is president of TGEU.

    It is interesting that he did not call for removal from the DSM and ICD while president of that, where it might have have had an effect.

  2. CA_Medicine_Woman Says:

    Initially, when I read this, I though, “about damned time.” And then after some thought, I went “uh oh.” While I agree that gender variances not directly related to an established mental disorder should be removed from the DSM, there’s a catch to removing it from the ICD as well.

    For years, many have fought to have medical procedures related to transsexualism covered by private and/or public health insurance. After decades, only two actually provide such coverage, and then only in specific market areas. Even then, you really have to do your research to get the coverage to begin with, and for most it means starting the whole “transition” process all over again.

    Those who want to remove GID, transsexualism, or whatever label we want to apply or is currently applied by others forgot a very key factor. If something is NOT listed in the ICD, there is no way insurance will pay for it, private or public, especially in the US. Another aspect is that, in the US, there are thousands of transsexuals who are forced onto Social Security Disability, because of the discrimination they face because of who they are. If GID or transsexualism is removed from the ICD, those persons would immediately lose that last safety net.

    Remove from the DSM? Most definitely. Remove from the ICD? Not until the massive hostility and stigmatization faced by transsexuals is eliminated.

  3. Bad Hair Days Says:

    There are alternatives to F64:
    But it would still impose a psychological disorder.
    Then there are the Keys of conditions that impose wrong phyiscal development for ones sex.

    Best would be to add a Q entry. And there are groups working on that.

  4. karen A Says:

    There is a big downside to just removing it without having a established physical diagnosis (which won’t happen)..

    That is why I think the efforts to remove GID are counterproductive… While i understand the motivation in the end I think it is ignoring practical reality. In any having a psychologically based diagnosis does not mean we are crazy (any more than say depression or other many other things) and practically does not mean much of anything in day to day life… But having it does make resources available that would not be otherwise. (My SRS was covered by insurance BTW)

    Unlike homosexuality, we do need medical intervention, which makes things practically very different.

    – karen

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