Japan refuses to register trans man as father on birth certificate

By Kay Steiger
Saturday, November 3, 2012 13:00 EDT
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A two-month old baby is given a bath in Koriyama city, Fukushima prefecture, Japan on March 18, 2011. (AFP)
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A person who had a sex-change to become a man has complained of discrimination after a Japanese court refused to register him as the father of his wife’s child, according to reports Saturday.

The 30-year-old, who was born female, had sought to be registered as the father after his wife delivered a boy in 2009 by way of artificial insemination using donated sperm.

But the Tokyo Family Court ruled the child must be registered as if he was born out of wedlock as the man is physically not capable of reproduction — despite the fact sterile men are routinely recognised as the fathers of babies born using artificial insemination.

The couple married in 2008, after the husband officially changed his gender, and were recognised as husband and wife under a new law that came into effect in 2004.

“Under the law, Japan decided to treat me as a man. I would like to receive the same treatment as a father too,” the man, whose name was not reported, told local journalists Friday, according to the Mainichi Shimbun.

“I feel I am being discriminated against. I will continue to fight so that I can live as a husband and a father,” he said, according to national broadcaster NHK.

Kay Steiger
Kay Steiger
Kay Steiger is the managing editor of Raw Story. Her contributions have appeared in The American Prospect, The Atlantic, Campus Progress, The Guardian, In These Times, Jezebel, Religion Dispatches, RH Reality Check, and others. You can follow her on Twitter @kaysteiger.
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