‘The Darkest Day’: Scottish Parliament Passes Bill That Lets Anyone Change Their Gender With No Dysphoria Diagnosis

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Alyssa Blakemore Contributor
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A new gender reform bill passed by the Scottish Parliament on Thursday now allows individuals as young as 16 to register as transgender without a gender dysphoria diagnosis.

Supporters lauded passage of the controversial proposals as a “historic day for equality,” according to the Independent. The Gender Recognition Reform Bill was backed by the ruling Scottish National Party and garnered votes from members of the Green parties and Labour and Liberal Democrats, the outlet reported. The Scottish Conservatives campaigned against it.

The hotly contested reforms passed in a vote of 86-39, amid shouts of protest by some and celebration by others. Protestors removed from the session could be heard shouting, “shame on you” and “this is the darkest day,” the Independent reported.

Opponents of the bill, including Scottish Conservative MSP Rachael Hamilton, suggest it endangers women in single-sex spaces, the Independent reported.

“In the rush to make the process a little easier for trans people, the government is making it easier for criminal men to attack women. That’s the problem here,” Hamilton said, the outlet noted. (RELATED: Famous Transgender Navy SEAL Chris Beck Announces Detransition, Calls For Treatments On Kids To Stop)

The law “gives any man the right to self-identify as a woman after three months of living as a woman … with minimal safeguards,” SNP lawmaker Joanna Cherry from the UK Parliament, Euronews reported. Previously, individuals who expressed a different identity had to wait two years before changing their gender designation on identity documents, the outlet reported. Scotland’s new reform bill cuts the time to just three months, six months for those ages 16 and 17.

Author J.K. Rowling called the bill “the single biggest rollback of women’s rights in our lifetimes,” The Guardian reported. The famed author of the “Harry Potter” series faced accusations of transphobia earlier this month for opening a women-only crisis center for those who had been sexually abused.

The bill was also opposed for its impact on other vulnerable individuals, as reported by Catholic News Agency. “Children must be protected from making permanent legal declarations about their gender, which may lead to irreversible elective interventions, including surgery,” Scottish bishops warned in a strongly worded statement released before Thursday’s vote.