As the Trump administration continues their attack on Trans lives, they are currently trying to make it difficult to discuss Trans people at the United Nations.
At meetings of the UN’s Third Committee, concerned with “social, humanitarian and cultural” rights, U.S. diplomats are reportedly lobbying to replace language alluding to gender identity at the United Nations with terminology affirming the White House’s belief that gender is designated by birth. Officials have requested the phrase “gender-based violence” get swapped out with “violence against women” in a sex trafficking report.
Representatives from the U.S. say terminology “that acknowledges the existence of trans folks is “vague and politically correct language.”
“If you only say violence against women, it doesn’t really tell the whole story,” a senior diplomat at the UN said. “We shouldn’t be going along with encouraging their society to be regressive. And if that means a blazing row in the Third Committee, I would have a blacking row in committee because I think some things are worth cherishing and worth hanging on to.”
This comes after The New York Times reporting earlier this week that the administration drew up a policy paper to define gender as male or female only and unchangeable from birth, despite the American Medical Association (AMA) ruling last year that gender and sexual identities are not always binary.
“It’s clear the administration is engaged in a broad strategy of erasing transgender people’s existence across the federal government,” Mara Keisling, the executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality said. “While it’s infuriating they would behave in such an extreme and volatile manner at the United Nations, we are confident their prejudice will lose out to science, reason, and the ongoing fight for human rights.”
An official from the U.S. Mission to the United Nations released the following statement to INTO:
In no way is the United States attempting to exclude the protection of transgendered [sic] persons, or protection of any person, in any UN resolution. This Administration is against discrimination of any kind and is committed to inclusive, non-discriminatory, and integrated international development. That commitment is driven by the understanding that discrimination can and does affect a broad and diverse range of people, including LGBTI persons. When certain parts of resolutions explicitly refer to issues affecting “women and girls,” our negotiators have suggested in several instances to change “gender” to “women” and/or “women and girls” to make the resolutions more accurate.