The World Health Organisation no longer considers being trans a ‘mental disorder’.
On Monday 18 June, the WHO published the latest version of the International Classification of Diseases, which has placed all trans-related categories under a new chapter entitled Conditions Related to Sexual Health.
Previously, trans identities had been classified under Mental and Behavioural Disorders.
Dr Lale Say, Coordinator for the Department of Reproductive Health and Research at WHO, says the change is expected to “reduce stigma” and also help push for “social acceptance” for people who identify as trans.
“Gender incongruence was taken out from Mental Health Disorders because we had better understanding that this wasn’t actually a mental health condition, and leaving it there was causing stigma,” she explains.
“So in order to reduce the stigma, while also ensuring access to necessary health interventions, this was place to a different chapter – the sexual health chapter – in the new ICD.”
Gender incongruence is described as “a marked and persistent incongruence between an individual’s experienced gender and the assigned sex”.
A recent study has revealed that UK employers strongly discriminate against transgender workers.
The survey – conducted by Crossland Employment Solicitors – found that 1 in 3 employers are “less likely” to hire a transgender person, and 43% revealed that they’d be unsure.
The retail industry has the highest number of businesses who weren’t open to hiring someone who’s transgender (47%), followed by IT (45%), leisure and hospitality (35%) and manufacturing (34%).
Those in the financial sector are the most inclusive, with 34% likely to hire transgender workers, followed by the legal sector (33%) and construction and engineering (25%).
Only 3% of the 1,000 employers surveyed have an equality procedure that openly welcomes transgender people to apply for jobs.
The Equalities Act 2010 doesn’t protect non-binary workers or transgender people who don’t undergo gender-reassignment surgery, and will only protect the rights of those who have a medical transformation.
According to Stonewall research released earlier this year, 51% of trans people said they have hidden their gender identity at work for fear of discrimination or abuse.
Even more alarming is that 12% of trans employees said that they have been physically attacked by a colleague or customer in the past year.