Zorica Mršević

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The experiences of countries all around the world show that there is no single, the same and universally applicable scenario of legal changes in terms of regulating the status of transgender people. The process most commonly begins by providing gender reassignment hormonal surgery procedures, which are followed by the legal recognition of a new gender identity. The next step necessarily implies the need to enact legislation to regulate the so-called social gender or gender identity, according to the right to self-determination of transgender persons, which is unrelated to previously undertaken medical treatment and gender reassignment surgery. Some countries have gone far in the implementation of this third step, while others have not taken even the first steps. Notably, different initiatives and events may be observed worldwide, many of which constitute the necessary "first steps" aimed at increasing the social acceptance of gender diversity. These steps may seem small and insufficient, but they are actually huge and significant in breaking the sanctity of the binary gender division and accepting specific transgender individuals. All the steps are based on the need to protect all people, including transgender people, from discrimination, violence, different forms of victimization, and other impacts of neglecting gender identity. Once gender identity becomes legally protected, it is possible to gradually build procedures and other types of legal protection mechanisms designed for all people whose gender identity differs from the rigid binary division into women and men, as the only identity options. In Serbia, there is still a significant lack of legal regulations on the status of transgender persons, which implies that there is much room for improvement in this area. While it would be easy to keep ignoring this issue, it would be irresponsible to exclude transgender persons from the analysis of social phenomena involving marginalization and victimization.


transgender, gender identity, gender mark change in identification documents, first steps

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