A bill submitted on March 31 by the rightwing Hungarian government seeks to end legal recognition of transgender people. It may soon become impossible for a Hungarian citizen to legally change their gender in the civil registry. The Guardian reported that the amendment to the Registry Act would specifically deem an individual’s sex as the “biological sex based on primary sex characteristics and chromosomes.”
The proposed bill states: “The gender entered into the civil registry is based on facts determined by doctors, declared by the registry.”
It continues: “Given that completely changing one’s biological gender is impossible, it is necessary to lay it down in law that it cannot be changed in the civil registry either.”
New powers to rule by decree given to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán by the Hungarian government to fight the COVID-19 pandemic this month has given the rightwing leader an opportunity to put forward the decree without needing to consult other lawmakers.
Human rights groups and trans activists state that this bill will only increase discrimination toward the transgender community in Hungary.
The Transvanilla Transgender Association has reportedly stated, “It denies trans people the right to gender recognition, violating their right to self-determination and countering national and international human rights standards.
“Our association calls on the government to reconsider the proposal. As we have previously reported, Hungary is one of the few EU member states, where no proper legal measures are in place to regulate legal gender recognition.”
Talking to The Guardian, 39-year-old trans woman Ivett Ördög, living in Budapest, remarked on how this bill is not only a grave offense against basic human rights but will also pose issues to daily life.
Ördög said, “In Hungary, you need to show your ID to rent a bike, buy a bus pass or to pick up a package at the post office. It basically means coming out as trans to complete strangers, all the time. The good version is they are nice about it, but there are situations where people turn quite hostile.”
If passed, the bill will make it impossible for citizens to make an amendment of the gender listed on all legal documents, including passports and driver’s licenses.