2021-09-27 21:56:30 Two Transgender Women Win Seats in the Next German Parliament
Two Transgender Women Win Seats in the Next German Parliament
Despite the fact that the name “Tessa Ganserer” did not appear on the ballot in Sunday’s election, Ms. Ganserer won a seat representing a district of Nuremberg, becoming one of the first two openly transgender people to join the German Parliament.
She was forced to run under the name her parents gave her at birth because she refused to comply with the country’s 40-year-old law that requires a medical certificate before a person can legally change their name and gender identity.
Nyke Slawik, a 27-year-old trans woman, also won a seat. Both are members of the Green Party, which has a strong chance of forming a coalition government.
“Crazy!” Ms. Slawik posted on her Instagram account. “I still can’t believe it, but thanks to this historic election result, I will undoubtedly be a member of the next German Parliament.”
Ms. Ganserer, 44, said on Facebook, “It was the election campaign of our lives, and it was worth it.” Yesterday, the old, backward way of thinking was punished.”
Germany legalized same-sex marriage and gay parent adoption in 2017, as well as a partial ban on conversion therapy, which aims to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
This year, the country prohibited operations aimed at assigning babies to specific sexes if they are born with sex characteristics. That means that parents can no longer make that decision for their children; they will have the right to decide for themselves later in life. However, lawmakers rejected two bills proposed by the Greens and the Free Democrats that would make it easier for transgender people to self-identify in general.
Currently, they are required to obtain a medical certificate under the country’s Transsexuality Law, which was passed in 1981, at a cost of hundreds to thousands of dollars. Working to change that requirement, which opponents say is both stigmatizing and costly, will be one of Ms. Ganserer’s top priorities in Parliament, she said.
During the campaign, Olaf Scholz, the Social Democratic candidate for chancellor, blamed the Christian Democratic Union for the previous government’s failure to change the medical certificate law. Rights activists are hoping that the combination of a Social Democratic-led government and two trans representatives will spur change.