Author Topic: Problems in the passport control  (Read 963 times)

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Problems in the passport control
« on: January 26, 2012, 07:33:32 am »
I haven't written an introduction post yet, so I'll sum it up here. I'm a cisgendered guy from Norway who has a couple of <transgender> friends, and I'm interested in helping them because of the absurd violation of human rights in our otherwise well-developed country.

In Norway, it's easy to change your first name to match your gender identity, but you cannot change your legal gender without being accepted at the only hospital in the country offering treatment for transsexual people (and 8 out of 10 are rejected because they don't "fit the diagnosis criteria"). What I'm most concerned about is the ability to change your legal gender to the one you identify with, without having a doctor deciding your gender for you. (In reality, there is only 1 single doctor in our entire country with the power to decide this, and the doctor in question also has a very bad reputation in the transgender community for treating patients badly.)

I have an FTM friend who wants to change his first name, but he is concerned that this will lead to practical problems when he's travelling abroad - will he be denied access to countries because his passport is believed to be false? I called the local passport office here, and they said they have never heard about anybody experiencing such problems. My friend says negative encounters with the password control are usually not reported, and he has heard of people being met with transphobia, being denied access to the country or even ordered to strip off their clothes to prove their sex! Well, to be honest I don't believe this is a big a problem as he says, but I really have to base my judgements upon facts, not stories. Still, I am writing this post to ask you transgender people what your experiences are with the passport control, positive or negative? And, if you want to specify, what information did you have in your passport? Your "right" (self-identified) gender? Your right first name? Your right passport image?