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Best & Worst Countries For Trans Rights In 2023
Transgender individuals face distinct challenges in their pursuit of freedom and safety, amidst the ongoing global fight for LGBTQ+ rights. In addition to Asher Fergusson’s annual LGBTQ+ Travel Safety Index, this new study focuses specifically on trans issues. Asher Fergusson has examined individual laws of various countries and collected data from international sources to create the “Global Trans Rights Index” for 2023, which helps identify the safest and least safe countries.
According to the study, Malta claims the top spot in the Trans Rights Index and ranks third in the LGBTQ+ index, making it one of the leading countries in terms of trans rights. It offers legal protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as constitutional safeguards against discrimination for all LGBTQ+ individuals. Hate crimes targeting trans people are outlawed, and changing legal gender identity does not require a medical transition. Following Malta, Portugal, Canada, Sweden, and Bolivia are among the countries that excel in trans rights. They provide social protections for LGBTQ+ individuals and allow legal gender identity changes without mandating medical transition.
Guyana ranks as the worst country for trans people due to its lack of worker protections, discrimination, and criminalization of violence. Cross-dressing was criminalized until 2018, and attacks against trans people are common. Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Malawi, and the United Arab Emirates are the next worst countries for trans people without any worker, discrimination, or criminalization protections.
Severe Discrimination Still Remains
The study reveals, however, that even in the top-ranking countries, many trans individuals continue to face severe discrimination, violence, and other challenges. Finland, for instance, previously required transgender individuals to undergo sterilization for a legal gender change until the law was amended in February 2023. Five out of the top ten countries in the study still reported cases of trans murders according to the Trans Murder Map project. Clearly, the global community has a long way to go in safeguarding the rights of its most vulnerable populations.
The study’s scores, which assess countries’ ability to protect trans people from discrimination, hold paramount importance. These scores range from 50 for comprehensive sexual orientation and gender protection to 25 for limited sexual orientation protection only. Additionally, if a country has only limited LGBTQ+ worker protections, it receives 10 points, and the same applies if it only recognizes limited anti-discrimination measures. Furthermore, countries receive 10 points if they have only limited criminalization of hate-based violence. The score related to trans murders carries double weight due to its significance in reflecting the lived experiences and safety of trans individuals.
To ensure the most accurate and up-to-date information on trans rights, Asher Fergusson has fact-checked and cross-referenced the data with individual country legislation.
Top 10 Best Countries For Trans People
Top 10 Worst Countries For Trans People
- Saudi Arabia