The government has announced plans to "streamline" the UK's invasive and outdated gender laws.
Under the Gender Recognition Act 2004, people can only make a legal application to change their gender if they have been medically diagnosed with gender dysphoria. They also have to provide evidence that they have been in transition for at least two years.
Justine Greening, the Minister for Women and Equalities, announced proposals today to remove the need for a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria before a person can apply to change their gender. The proposals also include "options for reducing the length and intrusiveness of the gender recognition system."
A consultation to improve and modernise the Gender Recognition Act will be published in the autumn, the government said.
Suzanna Hopwood, a member of LGBT charity Stonewall's Trans Advisory Group, welcomed the proposals, saying: "I am really pleased that the Government is making good on its commitment to review the Gender Recognition Act. Reform is one of the key priorities in our vision for removing the huge inequalities that trans people face in the UK. The current system is demeaning and broken."
Hopwood added: "It's vital that this reform removes the requirements for medical evidence and an intrusive interview panel, and finally allows all trans people to have their gender legally recognised through a simple administrative process. That’s what we’ll be calling for during this consultation, and I’m looking forward to seeing the law change soon after."
Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn, who this week criticised the Gender Recognition Act for not allowing "people to self-identify their gender," also welcomed the proposals.
The government also announced proposals today to make it easier for gay men in England to give blood. At present, gay men must wait a year after having sex to give blood, but the government wants to reduce this wait to three months.