On April 7, 2017 LGBT Weekly reported: STRASBOURG, France — Thursday, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that requiring sterilization of individuals seeking a change in their legal gender recognition violates human rights. Twenty two countries in Europe currently still require sterilization to access gender identity recognition, however this decision mandates that these countries amend their laws to reflect this positive ruling.
While forced sterilization has been deemed a human rights violation, the EU Court upheld that medical examinations and a mental health diagnosis were in line with the European Convention of Human Rights.
Jessica Stern, executive director of OutRight Action International, commenting on the decision said, “Today the world moved in the right direction for for trans rights everywhere. Forcing unnecessary medical interventions to access basic human rights like legal recognition of a person’s gender is barbaric. As more countries review laws for gender identity recognition it is essential that they forgo outdated policies and follow legislation from places like Malta or Argentina which prioritize self-determination. The decision from the European Court raises the bar globally.
”In a press release issued today Julia Ehrt, executive director of Transgender Europe, a human rights organization that has been at the forefront of of fighting these laws, also gave insight to the ruling, saying, “Today is a victory for trans people and human rights in Europe. This decision ends the dark chapter of state-induced sterilisation in Europe. The 22 states in which a sterilisation is still mandatory will have to swiftly end this practice. We are looking forward to supporting those and other countries in reforming their national legislation.”