Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin said at a Pride in Helsinki in July that the government would introduce a new law to support trans people in September. It is one of the last countries in Europe where gendered people must undergo sterilization if they wish to identify their gender on official documents and documents. Finland is also the only country in the Nordic countries. And now the Finnish parliament wants to change this situation.

Proponents of the bill argue that legal gender change is a free choice for individuals.

“Personally, this is a very important issue and it will be brought before Congress as soon as the fall sessions begin,” Mullin told the media over the summer. She thus followed up on the commitment of her predecessor Antti Leene, who after winning the election declared that the preparation of the new law was a promise for the next election period. On Thursday, MPs debated the law, last updated in 2002.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin’s government began working to change the definition of transition shortly after taking office at the request of the Council of Europe, which criticized Finland for violating physical autonomy and human rights, but the pandemic and Russian aggression in Ukraine.

In addition to mandating sterilization, the updated bill also eliminates mandatory psychiatric examinations and clinical trials. Only self-reporting is required to make the transition. Supporters of the law argue that legal gender reassignment is an individual’s free choice and that no third party is involved. It criticizes the fact that it excludes citizens under the age of 18 who are not.

If an amendment is to come into force, it must first be debated and voted on by parliament. Expect detailed debate and dissent across the political spectrum, especially on the question of what is the legal age for gender reassignment.

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