Late on Thursday night, following a vote on the issue of a 2017 court ruling which required the German government to either allow a third gender or to scrap gender classification altogether, the third gender was made into law.
In 2017 judges at the Karlsruhe constitutional court, ruled for a complainant who had been proven to have no chromosomal sex from birth but had been registered as female. According to the court, a refusal to allow the individual to have their gender changed to a third gender was discriminatory and unconstitutional.
It means that Germany has now become the first European country to allow parents to declare their children as divers [diverse] from birth, regardless of any chromosomal deficiencies.
Deutsche Welle reported that intersex births — where the infant is born with an X chromosome but not XX or XY, numbers around one in 2 000 births.
The new law requires people wanting to change their gender, to be verified by a medical practitioner, but LGBT lobby groups denounced the court ruling and claim that a medical report should not be required.
Germany’s Lesbian and Gay Association complained that the new law recognises gender as being “biological” while “social and psychological factors” should be taken into account, German magazine Zeit reported.
Some 100 000 people in Germany are believed to identify as intersex. Previously, they had left their gender classification blanc on official documents.
Other countries that allow a third gender include Australia, New Zealand, India, and Nepal. Canadians who claim to be neither a man nor a woman will be able to identify their gender as “X” on their passports.