South Africa: Home Affairs Commits to Addressing Transgender Related Concerns

22 September 2020

The Department of Home Affairs has committed to addressing systematic delays and training of staff in order to meet the ever-changing environment of trans people.

The commitment was made this week during the first meeting held by Home Affairs Minister, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi and the Trans Activist Coalition on Monday in Pretoria.

During the meeting, parties discussed various matters of mutual interest.

The Trans Activist Coalition included representatives from Iranti, Gender DynamiX, Be True 2 Me, Triangle Project, Same Love Toti, Access Chapter 2, Transgender and Intersex Africa, Matimba, Women's Legal Centre, the Legal Resources Centre and Transhope.

"The meeting is part of the Minister's commitment to engage constructively with all stakeholders in order to improve service delivery and development of policies," said the Ministry in a joint statement.

During the meeting, the parties discussed systematic delays in dealing with amendments of the particulars of trans people; effective communication between the two parties; Official Identity Management and Marriage Policies.

International trends in dealing with trans people, as well as Amendments to the Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act 49 of 2003, were also discussed.

"The parties committed to working together to address the systematic delays and training of Department of Home Affairs staff in order to meet the ever-changing environment of trans people," reads the joint statement.

The Trans Activist Coalition in the meeting committed to making a contribution to the Official Identity Management, Marriage Policies and Standard Operating Procedures once they are published for public comment.

"The parties committed themselves to draw valuable lessons from new international trends in matters relating to trans people. The parties agreed to further engagements, as dictated to by the circumstances, to deal with matters of mutual interest," the statement said.

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