Jersey will become the first, and to-date only, part of the United Kingdom to offer legal discrimination protection to intersex people when it is formally adopted in September. The Discrimination (Sex and Related Characteristics) (Jersey) Regulations 2015 will be formally adopted on 1 September 2015. It has become the first State within the UK to offer protected status to intersex people:-
3) In this paragraph, a person has intersex statusif the person hasphysical, chromosomal, hormonal or genetic featuresthat are –(a) neither wholly male or female;(b) a combination of male or female; or(c) neither male nor female.
Jersey is a Crown dependency, and has previously lagged a long way behind the UK in offering equality discrimination protections to it’s LGBTI community. The Bailiwick of Jersey retains it’s independence from the UK. In striving to bring it’s legislation up-to-date, Jersey has now surpassed the mainland in the equality protections it offers it’s 100,000 population.
The vote was carried unanimously by the 37 member legislature. The law is a first in UK legislation to specifically highlight intersex protections
Unlike the Maltese GIGESC legislation, it does not afford protection from pre-emptive medical interventions, more nearly echoing the intersex anti-discrimination legislation in Australia. As a step forward in recognising intersex lived experience, OII-UK warmly welcomes this step forward for intersex rights and protections. That welcome needs to be tempered by the fact that Jersey has yet to recognise same sex marriage, only acknowledging civil partnerships ‘in principle’ in 2009.
A proposal to adopt same sex marriage is set to be debated on 22 September 2015.