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Trans Equality and Human Rights

Trans equality and human rights can initially feel unfamiliar or confusing.
We provide good practice guidance for employers and service providers.
We help trans people to challenge discrimination and harassment.

Judge's gavel, legal textbook and scales of justice.

Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act 2010 prohibits discrimination and harassment in employment and provision of goods, facilities and services, including education and housing. It covers the protected characteristics of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, and sexual orientation.

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A person’s trans status must be treated with the same high level of confidentiality as sensitive personal medical information. The Gender Recognition Act 2004 provides enhanced privacy protections. Disclosure Scotland has a special confidential process available for trans people.

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Equalities monitoring

If carried out correctly, monitoring trans equality can help you to understand the needs of your trans service users and staff. It can help to make sure that the service you are providing is fit for purpose and that it is effective and efficient. It can help you identify areas for improvement and demonstrate your organisation’s commitment to the principles of the Equality Act 2010, especially the requirements of the Public Sector Duty.

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Use of pronouns

If you know someone who wishes to change the pronoun by which they are referred (for example from she to he), it is very important that you respect this, even if you initially find it difficult to consider them that gender.  In employment and when providing goods, facilities and services, it can be unlawful gender reassignment harassment to refuse to respect a trans person’s pronouns.

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Change of name

If a person wishes to be known by a different name they are entitled to change their name at any time.  They can change their title, forename and/or surname, add names or rearrange their existing names.

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Gender recognition

The Gender Recognition Act 2004 created a process to enable trans people to change their sex recorded on their UK birth certificates.  At least two years after they have socially transitioned and changed their gender on other official documents, a trans person can apply to the UK Gender Recognition Panel for a Gender Recognition Certificate. 

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Scottish Trans is part of the Equality Network