According to recent reports, the Russian parliament will tighten its regulations on gender reassignment in an effort to discourage young men from misrepresenting themselves as women to avoid military conscription.
Even though the Putin regime has a relatively hostile attitude towards LGBT rights, Russia’s laws are relatively lenient. They allow changing one’s marker gender after a psychological assessment and without the need for gender reassignment surgeries.
The head of the Duma Committee on Family, Women, and Children’s Affairs, Russian Kommersant, said that “Amendments to the State Duma will be introduced soon to officially prohibit gender reassignment surgery without.”
Last month, Russia’s Justice Minister Konstantin Chuychenk proposed the clampdown. He said that it would “take an important step towards enshrining Russian family values into law”.
Chuychenko told the Tass agency that this would allow them to eliminate the possibility of a person changing their gender by simply changing the documents. “A person can marry and adopt children if they change their passport gender, but remain physically the same.”
Vyacheslav Volodin, speaker of the State Duma claimed that over 2,700 cases had occurred in the last few months. “Decisions are made at private clinics. He explained that “a man wakes up and decides on his own in the morning that he’s no longer a male, but now a female; not women, but a boy,” as he put it. “He pays for the service, which can cost between 30k and 60k rubles, and receives a certification. With this certificate, he goes on to the registry, and passport office and changes his last name, first name, and patronymic.
Nina Ostanina – a communist and a supporter of this bill – acknowledged that the conflict had led to an increase in transgender identity. Ostanina said that both the Justice Ministry as well as MPs are concerned about the increase in gender marker changes. It seems that those who did not have the time to flee to Georgia or Kazakhstan hurriedly went to private clinics in order to fill out the paperwork. This isn’t just a legal loophole, it’s a loophole that affects education.
Coming Out, Russia’s biggest LGBT advocacy group, called on transgenders to prepare for their transitions as the new bill will make it much harder.
Since the beginning of its offensive in Ukraine last year, Russia suffered an astounding loss of 770,000 soldiers, of which over 570,000 sustained injuries that prevented them from returning to the frontlines.
After Putin banned draftees to leave the country, more and more Russian men are looking for ways to avoid military service. Approximately 700,000 Russians, and 12 million Ukrainians, have left the country in the past few months.
The new rules are expected to pass through the parliament quickly and may be approved by May 15th.