Landmark Gender Ruling in NSW

In a landmark decision New South Wales court of Appeal has ruled that a person does not have to have a defined gender and be registered as specifically male or female.

In 1989 former Perth resident Norrie, who goes by one name, underwent sexual reassignment surgery transitioning from being a male. In 2010 the Registry of Births, Marriages and Deaths issued Norrie with a certificate showing Norrie’s gender was unspecified. The certificate was later revoked and an appeal was made to the state’s Administrative Decisions Tribunal. The Tribunal ruled that a person must be either male or female.

Yesterday an appeal against that decision was upheld in the Court of Appeal and the matter has now been sent back to the Administrative Decisions Tribunal to decide on a gender neutral designation.

Speaking to the ABC Norrie’s solicitor Emily Christie from DLA Piper said,

“This is the first time that we’ve had any court of law in Australia saying that sex could potentially mean something other than male or female.”

“We’re hoping that this decision will then be taken on in a broader context both for courts of law – and also for government agencies.”

The landmark decision has made headlines around the world.

OIP Staff




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