Wednesday, February 1, 2012

PRESS RELEASE: Harper's Policy essentially BANS transgendered from flying! 01/31/2012


Recently, the Government of Canada quietly amended the Identity Screening Regulations of the Aeronautics Act to include:

Sec 5.2(1)(c) An air carrier shall not transport a passenger if the passenger does not appear to be of the gender indicated on the identification he or she presents.

This policy not only appears to unnecessarily single out transgendered individuals and keep them off airplanes, but it opens a whole lot of questions about the suitability of using gender (or sex for that matter) as a way to filter out security risks.

While there does exist a legal definition for Sex, none exists for Gender.  While the two classifications may appear similar, sex generally represents what's between your legs, but gender is between your ears. For many trans people, they are faced with a body that doesn't match their brain. Furthermore, there can be many road blocks that could prevent them from having corrective genital surgery. Furthermore, getting Government to recognize sex and/or gender changes in legal documents varies greatly across North American jurisdictions. It is even impossible in some.

As Eastern Canada's most visible and recognized trans person, I publicly denounce this unnecessary policy, that not only fails to add value to the public interest, but it adds unnecessary impediments to many members of the trans community who wish to travel by air. Most importantly, to have Government validate, and legislate transphobia and discrimination, can only do further harm to the world's most oppressed and misunderstood minority demographic.

Jennifer McCreath

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