A number of countries’ Gender Recognition Certificates (GRCs) will no longer be recognised by the UK government, it has been announced.

Kemi Badenoch, who is both the Women and Equalities minister and the Business Secretary, told MPs that countries where self-identification policies for transgender people have been adopted will be removed from its list of approved regions.

“This is long overdue,” she said on 6 December. “The list of approved overseas countries and territories was last updated in 2011.”

Badenoch continued: “We are doing this because there are some countries and territories on the list who have made changes to their systems and would not now be considered to have similarly rigorous systems as the UK.

“Inadvertently allowing self-ID for obtaining GRCs is not government policy.

“It should not be possible for a person who does not satisfy the criteria for UK legal gender recognition to use the overseas routes to do so.”

READ MORE: What are trans self-ID laws and what impact do they have?

People travelling from places on the approved list do not have to provide medical reports when applying for gender recognition in the UK.

Now, countries and territories where laws allowing people to self-identify have been introduced will be removed from it.

Scotland’s gender reform bill was blocked by the UK government

Self-identification allows trans people to determine their gender without the need of any medical certificates or a gender dysphoria diagnosis.

Scotland’s gender reforms to allow this were blocked from becoming law by the UK government at the start of this year, much to the dismay of many LGBTQIA+ rights campaigners.

Elsewhere in her address to MPs, Badenoch said that there will be a review into how the words ‘sex’ and ‘gender’ are used in law.

READ MORE: UK government: No members of the reshuffled cabinet are openly LGBTQ+

“I am exploring how we can rectify these issues across the board and provide legal certainty,” she explained.

“This will reduce the tensions that have emerged as a result of the confusion around the terms ‘sex’ and ‘gender’.”

Kirsten Oswald, the Scottish National Party’s Spokesperson for Women and Equalities in the House of Commons, asked Badenoch if an impact assessment had been conducted on how the health and well-being of those affected would be impacted.

She also stated that “nobody’s identity should be used as a political football” and questioned whether or not the government agrees that the “UK is travelling rapidly backwards” on LGBTQIA+ rights.

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“She talks about us using this issue as culture wars football, but the Labour opposition say this is the first time they’ve heard us say anything about this in the House, surely both cannot be true,” the Conservative MP responded.

“I think it is extraordinary that she is telling us that she is not compassionate. It is her Government in Scotland that was allowing rapists to be housed in women’s prisons while using self-ID as a cover, so I will not accept that.

“We are the ones who are thinking about women’s rights, we are the ones who are thinking about safeguarding, we are the ones who are thinking about vulnerability.”