The World Health Organization (WHO) is in the process of declassifying transgender as a mental illness. The decision, which might prove controversial for some political and religious leaders all over the globe, is a step forward into the acceptance of transgender individuals and could be seen as a new victory of the LGBT+ Community in their struggle for inclusion and equal rights all over the globe.
What is being transgender?
The WHO defines transgender as “an umbrella term for people whose gender identity and expression does not conform to the norms and expectations traditionally associated with the sex assigned to them at birth”. The term is a very inclusive one, not limited to people that undertake sex reassignment surgery, and has many variations and levels of acceptance inside the many cultures known to man.
However, transgender people often find themselves the target of discrimination from religious groups and generally conservative-minded people. The hope is that, with the WHO’s decision, there will be a call from all sectors for more acceptance towards this group, especially from a legal standpoint, regardless of religious preferences.
A Long Struggle
The fight for transgender rights has become in recent years a political minefield, but for transgender people themselves is not a matter of positions or parties, but rather, of being acknowledged as real people making reasonable decisions. The scientific community seems to be tilting towards their side, while religion-based intolerance appears to be fighting a losing battle. With these recent developments, and with the support of countries such as Sweden and Denmark, the world’s transgender community might be entering a new age that might lead to a decrease in suicides and depression among the members of the community, and more acceptance from the general public.