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“You’ve found various methods of deception and this bill is the latest proof.” Supporters rallied outside parliament during Monday’s debate, holding a banner reading: “Transgender rights are human rights”.The Church had urged the government to withdraw the bill. It is a precious thing for a woman to know about her feminine nature, and for a man to be aware of his male nature,” Bishop Nicolaos of Mesogaia told Greek Skai TV.Until now, anyone needing to officially change their gender had to be diagnosed with a “gender identity disorder” and have their reproductive organs removed, a practice condemned by human rights campaigners.“Absolutely no tradition, no perception of family calls for people to be sidelined or tossed aside into a social and institutional abyss,” Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who supported the law, told a heated discussion in parliament.The law applies to anyone over the age of 15 and allows a person to change legal gender twice.
“Your only goal is to stay in power,” said conservative lawmaker Simos Kedikoglou.
In the words of one teenager, “I told myself, ‘look at yourself, you came to Europe, what was your aim? If I wanted to do something I like, I would date a girl.
[But] because I don’t have the money I don’t have a choice.” This tragedy is exacerbated by the fact that many of these minors will never be able to obtain the funds required by smugglers to continue their journey and will eventually become trapped in the sex industry for what could be a considerable period of time.
The goal is not to prevent the most vulnerable of children from moving to safety and to better life options, but to ensure that they can do so in safety and with the protections promised for decades by European human rights principles.
Vasileia Digidiki is a psychologist and a visiting scholar at FXB.