Germany elected two trans women to it’s parliament for the first time

Two candidates just earned spots in history as Germany’s first out trans women lawmakers after winning seats in its parliamentary elections on Sunday.

The Greens, a center-left political party focused on environmental advocacy, finished third in the elections for Germany’s Bundestag, winning 14.8% of the vote. That total represents the 42-year-old party’s best-ever finish in the German federal races and will also result in a pair of other milestones: parliamentary seats for 44-year-old Tessa Ganserer and 27-year-old Nyke Slawik.

“It is a historic victory for the Greens, but also for the trans-emancipatory movement and for the entire queer community,” Ganserer, who has served in the parliament of the German state of Bavaria since 2013

“I still can’t quite believe it,” Slawik wrote, “but with this historic election result I will definitely be a member of the next Bundestag.”

The new lawmakers’ priorities include improving the quality of life for LGBTQ+ Germans. Ganserer, in particular, hopes to streamline the process of applying for a gender marker correction. Trans people who wish to amend their legal gender must file a petition with a local court, which commissions two experts to certify that the applicant has not identified with their assigned gender for at least three years, according to the Rainbow Portal, a government resource for LGBTQ+ Germans.

In addition to supporting a law that would allow trans people to self-identify their gender, Slawik plans to push for the adoption of a nationwide “action plan against homophobia and trans-hostility,” according to her campaign website. Her 10-point platform also includes ​​a “strategy against racism” in Germany and a “real federal anti-discrimination law.”

Still, Germany has made some progress for LGBTQ+ rights this year. Earlier this month, Germany’s Office of Justice announced that it was paying reparations to LGBTQ+ people who were persecuted under Nazi-era sodomy laws. Germany’s parliament also banned some intersex surgeries in April, although advocates have criticized the new law for limiting its scope to children who have an official diagnosis of a “disorder of sex development.”


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