Legal Recognition of Non-binary Gender Identities — [Sir Roger Gale in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 5:17 pm on 23rd May 2022.

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Photo of Anneliese Dodds Anneliese Dodds Party Chair, Labour Party, Chair of Labour Policy Review, Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities 5:17 pm, 23rd May 2022

That is a slightly different question from the one I was discussing. I hope the hon. Member is aware of the fact that the Equality and Human Rights Commission has recently released guidelines on those matters. I may well already have shared such a changing room; very often, women’s changing rooms will have separate cubicles, and in any case, that is how people often choose to try on clothes. If the hon. Member is interested in that matter, he could look at the EHRC’s guidelines.

In the spirit of what I have just said, Labour urges the Government to focus on the treatment of non-binary people, and to especially focus on the need for research. Kirsten Oswald referred to the fact that the Government’s LGBT 2018 action plan committed the Conservatives to launch separate calls for evidence on the issues faced by non-binary and intersex people. The Government appear to have contracted the National Institute for Economic and Social Research to investigate that area, but no research appears to have been carried out. The EHRC has also

“recommended that further understanding was needed before any legislation was brought forward”.

We believe that additional research is particularly important when it comes to those people who might describes themselves as intersex, or as having differences in sex development. That refers to the relatively small number of individuals who are born with any of several variations in biological sex characteristics—for example, in chromosomes or genitals—some of whom may describe themselves as intersex and some of whom may describe themselves as non-binary. I appreciate, again, that not everybody uses those categories.