MGRM and aditus wish to issue a statement with respect to the sentence decided in court today, where a trans person was assaulted on his place of work by a restaurant owner. We will, first of all, condemn the free-for-all attitude where a restaurant owner feels he can physically assault a patron who gets in touch in order to complain for not having been served adequately.
Also importantly, we would like to clarify that unlike certain early reports in the media, the victim is a trans man, using the pronouns he/him. We would also like to emphasise that both the victim and a witness stated that the aggressor insulted the victim during the assault, telling him that he was “not a real man, but a woman”.
The Malta LGBTIQ Rights Movement (MGRM) alongside Allied Rainbow Communities, Drachma, LGBTI+ Gozo, Aditus, Checkpoint Malta, Moviment Graffitti and MMSA gathered in front of The Honorary Consulate of The Slovak Republic in Valletta on Thursday 4th May 2023 to show solidarity with the transgender community in Slovakia and to express concern about the proposed bill that would make legal gender recognition impossible in Slovakia. MGRM co-coordinator Cynthia Chircop spoke out against the bill, which would require transgender individuals to undergo a genetic test to prove that their gender was incorrectly determined at birth, a test that would be virtually impossible for most transgender individuals to pass. We therefore call on Maltese Government and Maltese MEPs to Support Transgender Rights in Slovakia.
Chircop emphasised that the proposed bill would not only deprive transgender people of the opportunity to have their gender identity recognized legally but also goes against the right to self-determination and international human rights law. “The intention of this law is clear; to dehumanise, oppress and erase the transgender community,” said Chircop. “It will increase the risk of bullying, discrimination and violence that they already face. Everyone should be treated equally in front of the law, regardless of their gender identity.”
On Monday 29 February, together with our project partners MGRM, the Ministry for Education and Employment and the Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties, we launched the research report ‘Sensitivity, Safety and Strength: An Inter-agency Review of Malta’s Policy on Trans, Gender Variant and Intersex Students‘.
The report was researched in the context of the project that sought to assess the actual impact of the June 2015 national policy on trans, gender variant and intersex students.
Two primary goals drove the report’s spirit and methodology: to secure a safe learning environment for all students, and to support the full enjoyment of all their fundamental human rights. With this value approach in mind, our research conducted a series of stakeholder meetings in order to assess the actual impact of the June 2015 policy.
A Policy Assessment Tool was designed and presented, largely along the lines of the human rights indicator model promoted by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. The Tool is intended to be the basis for regular, comparative policy assessments that would identify implementation trends, challenges and actual impact on the intended target groups/themes.
Our report makes a number of recommendations, including:
- ensure access by the school community to information on services provided by community-based organisations;
- engage in effective out-reach to Church and Independent Schools, in order for them to endorse the June 2015 policy and to participate in sharing of best practices, data collation and national monitoring exercises;
- design and implement a structured training programme on LGBTIQ matters in schools, starting from professional training at the University of Malta and following with on-going professional growth;
- provide schools with guidelines on attire and physical appearance (e.g. are boys allowed to wear ear-rings or to grow their hair?);
We were happy that this project enabled us to to work hand in hand with NGO and institutional partners, on the basis of a common understanding of the need to ensure a rights-based and child-centric approach to this sensitive issue. This is definitely a project implementation methodology that we will seek to follow in other areas.
We’ve spent the past few months working on a policy assessment tool that we’ll be using to review Malta’s policy on trans, gender variant and intersex children. The policy was published on 16 June 2015.
Running from January to December 2015, this project brings us together as partners with, MGRM, the Ministry for Education and Employment and the Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties.
The project will conduct a qualitative research exercise assessing the immediate impact on schools of Malta’s new national Educational Policy on Trans, Gender Variant and Intersex Students.
Following the development of specific indicators in consultation with policy-makers, the project will base this assessment on attitudes and approaches of schools to trans, gender variant and intersex children and youth, and their families, in order to ascertain the effectiveness and sustainability of the policy.
The project’s assessment tool will lend itself to future further assessments for on-going evaluation, as well as possible use in other educational policy areas such as racism.
Our Director commented, “we are extremely happy to partner with governmental and non-governmental entities in such an important initiative as this further strengthens our potential impact on national human rights standards. We are also keen to advocate for the introduction of regular and inclusive policy review exercises on the basis of human rights indicators.”
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This project is funded by ILGA-Europe, through the Documentation and Advocacy Fund (funding cycle 2014).