Thursday 09 July 2020

Transgender people demand apology from the state for forced sterilisation

Photo: Depositphotos.com

A group of 16 people who were allowed to transition to a different sex before 2014 on condition they agreed to be sterilised are demanding a public apology and compensation from the state.

With the backing of women’s rights bureau Clara Wichmann and the Transgender Netwerk Nederland, the group has written a letter to Justice minister Sander Dekker explaining their case.

‘People need to know this happened and shouldn’t have happened,’ spokeswoman for the group Willemijn van Kempen told the Volkskrant.

Van Kempen (58), transitioned in 1998 and the law was changed in in 2014 to end compulsory sterilisation, in the wake of a  critical Human Rights Watch report. She  says she represents ‘hundreds of people, including those who did not transition because they wanted children’.

Van Kempen herself asked for her genetic material to be kept so she could become a parent a some stage but was refused because it supposedly undermined her wish to become a woman.

Some 500 people a year change gender in the Netherlands. A new law is currently being prepared which will make the administrative side of gender change easier.

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