Just in time for Madrid’s Pride celebration, Spain’s Cabinet has approved a new draft of an LGBTQ rights bill that would allow transgender teenagers to legally change the gender listed on their official documents.
Promoted by Spain’s left-wing United We Can party, the new law would allow anyone 16 and older to change their name and gender simply by stating their desire to do so twice within a four-month period, without the parents’ permission. Teens between ages 14 and 16 would need parental permission or a judge’s authorization, which would also be mandatory for those between 12 and 14. Children under the age of 12 would only be allowed to change their name.
Under current regulations, transgender individuals must acquire a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria and receive hormonal treatment for two-years in order to legally change their gender.
The latest draft of the bill includes a new provision allowing non-Spaniards living in Spain to change their name and gender on Spanish documents if “their rights are not guaranteed in their home countries.”
In a statement, Irene Montero, Spain’s Equality Minister, said, “This is a historic day after more than 15 years without any legislative progress. We want to send a very clear message that the lives of LGBTQ persons matter. Today we again place ourselves in the vanguard of LGBTQ rights.”
The bill, which will now move to the Spanish Parliament for approval, also bans so-called conversion therapies.
“The lives of LGTBI and transgender people do not need any cure,” Montero said.