Australian bill seeks to stop irreversible intersex surgery on children
Sydney, Australia, Mar 22 (EFE).- The Australian Capital Territory Wednesday tabled in the Canberra Legislative Assembly a proposed legislation that seeks to protect intersex people from unnecessary medical interventions without their consent.
The new legislation recognizes that people with variations in sex characteristics should not be subject to harm through inappropriate medical interventions, Chief Minister Andrew Barr said in a statement.
“Intersex people have been harmed. Some of the treatments they received did not meet their care needs. Treatments did not uphold their rights,” Barr said in a speech aired by the public broadcaster ABC.
According to activists, children often undergo irreversible medical procedures when they are too young to consent.
The bill will allow these people, the “I” in LGBTQI+, to decide on medical procedures when they are old enough.
There are people with variations in sex characteristics and their families who have experienced harm through inappropriate medical interventions.
The proposed legislation, if passed, would make the Australian Capital Territory the first jurisdiction in the country to implement such a law.
Mimi Hall and her family were among dozens of members of the intersex community in the assembly when Barr introduced the bill.
Hall told ABC that “there was a lot of confusion around what I was, and who I was and what made me me” as she grew up.
She said she felt different from her peers from a young age but found out being intersex when she was 21.
“I feel really privileged to be here on such an amazing day — on such a momentous day when there is so much actual change happening for our community,” she said. EFE