Summary: Trans and intersex people – Challenges for EU law

On Wednesday 26 September the LGBT Intergroup hosted the seminar Trans and intersex people: Challenges for EU law. The event was attended by Members of the European Parliament, the European Commission and Council, the EEAS, and civil society. The panel of speakers examined a new report on trans and intersex issues ordered by the European Commission, and discussed possible future developments for EU law and policy.


(All images © European Union/European Parliament)

Event report

Silvan Agius, report co-author

One of the study’s authors presented the main findings of the report. His presentation included definitions of terms such as ‘gender identity’ and ‘gender expression’, and included several recommendations for EU law to fully protect trans and intersex people from discrimination.

Pirkko Mäkinen, Finnish Ombudswoman for equality

The Finnish Ombudswoman for equality has done leading work for the inclusion of gender identity and gender expression in Finnish law. In her presentation, she explains why her office took up work on these grounds of discrimination, and how Finnish law is adapting to new understandings of fundamental rights.

European Commission

Eleonora Sadauskaite presented the Commission’s views on the report, and the ways in which it already combats discrimination on grounds of sex, including for some trans people.

Richard Köhler, Transgender Europe

In this presentation, Transgender Europe welcomes the Commission report, and offers several avenues for the future deveolopment of EU fundamental right policy.

Dan Christian Ghattas, Organisation Intersex International

Finally, Dan Christian Ghattas from Organisation Intersex International explains how intersex people are affected by EU law and the current absence of protection, and discusses good practice from Europe, including Scotland.

FEMM Coordinators

Concluding the event, Antonyia Parvanova (spokesperson of the ALDE Group for gender equality) and Marina Yannakoudakis (spokesperson of the ECR Group for gender equality) presented their reaction to the study and the discussions.

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