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Professor Sharon Cowan gives evidence to Scottish Parliament on Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill

Wed 22 June 2022

Sharon Cowan

On 14 June, Edinburgh Law School’s Professor Sharon Cowan, Professor of Feminist and Queer Legal Studies, provided evidence to the Scottish Parliament Equalities, Human Rights and Civil Justice Committee.

Professor Cowan gave evidence on the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill that has been proposed to parliament, as part of a panel of experts alongside other experts in the field. Her evidence stated that during her research, despite hearing biographical evidence from individuals of transgender or non-binary identity, that in 2016 Scotland was 'the best place on the planet to be trans’, the current system of gender recognition in Scotland is no longer fit for purpose and lags behind other jurisdictions. The system of gender recognition process in Scotland therefore urgently requires updating to conform to current International Human Rights standards and other standards of good practice. She noted that should Scotland choose to introduce a system of self-declaration of gender they would be following in the footsteps of many other countries who have legalised systems of gender self-declaration. 

You can view Professor Cowan’s full evidence and Committee session on Scottish Parliament TV