Thanks to the hard work of this M2T lawyer, “N. Nicole Nussbaum”. It started with another M2T, who wasn’t happy with the deballing requirement in Ontario, Canada, for changing the sex on legal documents such as birth certificates and passports.
Ontario trans rights decision makes Canadian history
Monday, April 16, 2012
In what a London lawyer is calling a “game-changing decision,” the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal has struck down a rule that required trans people to undergo “transsexual surgery” in order to change the sex category on their birth certificates.
Released April 11, the 95-page decision follows a challenge by one trans woman who complained she was discriminated against because she could not change her legal documents unless she had surgery. However, she did have surgery in 2008.
“She had an orchiectomy (the removal of the testicles), at least in part to satisfy the requirement to change the sex designation,” explains lawyer N Nicole Nussbaum.
The tribunal found that the Vital Statistics Act requirement of “transsexual surgery” prior to changing the sex designation on a birth certificate discriminates against trans people, she says. The provincial government has been ordered to remove this stipulation.
“They completely knocked that out,” Nussbaum says. “The tribunal doesn’t have the authority to strike down a law, but they can say the law is not enforceable.”
An emotional Susan Gapka, the chair of the Trans Lobby Group, says she is still poring over the decision. She tells Xtra it is a key building block toward allowing trans people to be included in society. She hopes it will support Toby’s Law, which is currently moving through the provincial legislature. Toby’s Law would amend the Ontario Human Rights Code to include gender identity and gender expression.
“I’m absolutely ecstatic,” she says, noting Ontario will be the first Canadian province to legally recognize this distinction. “This is a very good decision. It supports what we have been saying all along, and now the court has acknowledged that.”
As a result of the decision, Ontario now has 180 days to revise the criteria for sex designation change. The government must now present “some alternate requirement,” Nussbaum says. “One idea that is being considered is having a guarantor process, so there would be some third-party guarantor confirm that a person is living in a particular gender.”
The precedent-setting decision could force changes to legislation in other provinces and territories, she says.
Additionally, the birth certificate is used as a foundation document to change federal identifications, such as passports. “It will be also interesting to see how this affects passports, which also has a surgical requirement. This decision may be enough to change policy on a national level.”
Gapka agrees. “This is a clear signal to the federal government, and all legislatures across the country, that Ontario is leading the way in harmonizing and modernizing the way legal documents are distributed and accessed by trans people. This is a wonderful day.”
During the provincial election in October, Trans Lobby Group activist Christin Milloy, who was running for the Libertarian Party in Mississauga–Brampton South, made the issue one of her platform priorities.
“There’s a lot of bureaucracy in changing your sex designation in Ontario,” she told Xtra at the time. “For the birth certificate, which is issued by the province, proof of transsexual surgery is required. That’s the exact phrase they use.”
SRS was first listed by OHIP in 1971, but then-premier Mike Harris cut the funding in 1998, Gapka explains. The procedure was relisted under the Ontario Liberals in 2008. At the time, the minister of health, George Smitherman, said eight to 10 people undergo SRS every year at a total annual cost of about $200,000.
But I so have to share the piccy of the ‘Members of the Trans Lobby Group at Queen’s Park in 2010′ that was attached to the above article:
Yup, these luvly nouveau-laydees aren’t happy that, even though they can still pack peen, they wanna keep their laydeeballz too! Why not! I am sure Canadian FABs are eager to have nouveau-laydees packing fully functional laydee-peens in female-only spaces! And looky at that photo, four out of the five are late transitioners too – mmm, convincing!
I actually love the cover of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal document, to keep the Applicant anonymous, they assigned the code “XY”, mwahahaha, how twanzphobic of the OHRT! zmog, they totally ignored his nouveau-laydee status!
I wonder if the document also mentioned that he could still pack his laydee-peen? I guess that doesn’t figure in the Human Rights game, that born females should be protected from having to share their spaces with dudes in dresses who are still packing the full impregnator kit.
So, just who is this lawyer? No surprise really, an M2T! (In the following extract I have omitted all the really boring bits)
At this point in time, I feel that it is important to provide people with an update with respect to my transition status. I hope that this will allow people to manage their own expectations, so that irrespective of anything else, people are not surprised. I began the so-called Real Life Test on July 18th, 2006. This means that I have been living in a female gender role full-time (24-7) for about 10 weeks. By living in a female gender role I mean presenting exclusively as a woman, and not as a man, in all situations. This includes at home, on job interviews, with clients, in court, with friends, etc. For information on what the real life test is, please visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Real_life_test.
I submitted my Name Change Application on Friday, September 1st, 2006. The clerk advised me that the process takes approximately 2 months, and accordingly, I expect to receive the certificate of name change in or around the beginning of November. If and when the application is granted (IY”H) my legal name will be Neshama Nicole Nussbaum. I use Nicole mostly and Neshama in Jewish settings where I would have historically used my Hebrew name. For anyone wondering, the name Neshama is the Hebrew word for Soul, Spirit or Essence, and Nicole is a name I’ve always liked. I am usually comfortable being addressed as Nordi, or in limited situations with other historical names depending on the intentions of my addressor.
Of course, you can find NNN (or “N3″) on Facebutt, Twitter, and lots of other places too
And typically, Nussbaum/N3 likes to have it both ways, check out his linked-in profile page:
Yup, the Association of Transgender Professionals AND the Women’s Law Association of Ontario. N3 of course was raised as a boy, went to uni as a male, and worked for the first seven years as a male and is also a Barrister. The purpose of groups such as WLAO is because females are actively discriminated against throughout school and in the workplace, and they are a minority in most professions, specifically highly paid professions. Enter nouveau-laydees (probably still packing their laydee-peens), and discrimination no longer exists in these professions, because lookey! moar laydees!
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nicolenussbaumlaw.com/ (password protected website)