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No Place To Go PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Deidre* is a 17-year old MTF, currently homeless, and was taken to IAM’s (Inclusive and Affirming Ministeries) Ithembelam shelter by Caroline Bowley, Programmes Manager at Gender DynamiX. She was first brought to the attention of Gender DynamiX (GDX) when she was brought to the GDX drop-in centre by Constable Conradie of the Philippi Police. Deidre had been kicked out of school for refusing to cut her hair. Since then Caroline Bowley has been following up as Deidre has been living with various people and on the street because Deidre refuses to live at home due to issues with her mother and brother.  Caroline has made contact with the Department of Social Development to start the process of getting Deidre placed, although the department has admitted that it would be difficult to place her because she is a transgender child. Caroline has also contacted RAPCAN (Resources aimed at the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect) who have said they cannot help but referred her to the Social Worker at Wynberg Court whom she has not yet been able to contact. Deidre has not been back to school and is still living at the shelter.

*Name changes to keep identity private
Gender Identity Disorder Now Gender Incongruence PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 15 March 2010

Gender identity Disorder has been renamed Gender Incongruence in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) and seems to be more flexible while taking away the stigma of a mental disease. The proposed revision defines Gender Incongruence as “A marked incongruence between one’s experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender of at least six months duration...”

A lively discussion in the forum of the Gender DynamiX website followed the release of the draft criteria. Andrea felt that “We do need a critical criteria to sort the true ‘T’s’ from those who are ‘mixed up’. She added that “One cannot play with Gender Dysphoria as once changes take place there [is] no turning back.”

Lack of Understanding at the Core of Crimes Against Transgender People PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 15 March 2010

“The mere fact that transpeople are living out their lives and their identities, makes them by default vulnerable to gender-based violence, discrimination and secondary victimisation.” This was the message delivered by Liesl Theron, director of Gender DynamiX at the 4th Conference on Sexual Health and Rights in Ethiopia recently.

In her paper Liesl said there was a huge rate of under-reporting when it comes to going to the police stations to report any kind of crime against them or even if they were a witness to a crime.
Qwelane Set to go to Uganda PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 15 March 2010

There is great concern in LGBTI circles regarding media reports that Jon Qwelane is to assume the role of S.A. Ambassador to Uganda. Recently the Lesbian and Gay Equality Project (LGEP) sent a letter to President Jacob Zuma, calling on him to reconsider this possible appointment.

In the column entitled ‘Call me names, but Gay is not ok’, which was accompanied by a cartoon connecting homosexuality with bestiality, Qwelane made derogatory references to lesbian and gay people based solely on their sexual orientation. This, writes the LGEP, is in “direct opposition to the constitutional protection enjoyed by all South Africans to not be discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation.”

Is Transition-Related Medical Expenses Tax Deductable in S.A.? PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 15 March 2010

A US Tax Court recently ruled that a transgender woman’s medical expenses for hormone therapy and sex-reassignment surgery were medically necessary and therefore tax deductible under Federal Law.

The court as well as the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association recognised that transition related health care is non-cosmetic but medically necessary health care.

The ruling follows a case stemming from a decision by the US Internal Revenue Service to reject Rhianon O’Donnabhain’s deductions of her expenses for sex reassignment surgery in 2001 from her federal income tax.
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