Julia Hartley-Brewer takes on lawyer over gender-neutral passports

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

talkRADIO’s Julia Hartley-Brewer has said it is important to recognise “biological, scientific, medical truths” as she debated a campaign to introduce gender-neutral passports.

It follows a landmark Court of Appeal ruling that yesterday dismissed calls for the option of an “X” gender, meaning "unspecified", in passports for people who identify as neither male nor female.

Campaigner Christie Elan-Cane had argued that the current policy requiring citizens to be labelled as “M” of “F” was “inherently discriminatory” and breached human rights laws.

But speaking to Eraldo D’Ati, a lawyer who has represented Elan-Cane, Julia said official documents must have “accurate information”. These are her views and not talkRADIO's.

She said: “The thing about these official documents is this isn’t about recognising what [people] feel they are or who they feel they are or how they want to live their life.

“These are about objective facts about you.”

Elan-Cane has been living as a non-gendered person for almost three decades – Julia said: “They’re entitled to do that but it doesn’t mean they’re entitled to have a document saying that’s the case.”

Julia continued: “Whether or not this person, Christie Elan-Cane, identifies as being a woman or not, nevertheless, they were born biologically a woman - in the event that there was a health risk for them of some sort they would be treated as a woman not as a man.

“There are biological, scientific, medical truths which are relevant here aren't they?”

But Mr D’Ati questioned why people should not be able to choose an “unspecified” gender when others are already allowed to change their official gender.

He said: “There are people in this country already that, after they transition to a different gender, they will obtain a passport with a different gender marker so it is not entirely correct that they would maintain the same gender marking throughout their life just on the basis of what they were assigned at birth.”

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