Joint Committee On Human Rights Written Evidence

40.Submission from Fiona Scott

  I have read the Draft Bill re: Transsexual People with interest.

  I have interest in this Bill as it will affect me. I went through transition in 1995 at the age of 55.

  I married a lovely lady in 1965. She was unaware of my medical condition, as I thought would "grow out of it"—marriage would normalize me—sadly this was not to be. At the age of five—my Dad was still in the RAF as WWII was coming to a close—I use to pray to be normal—to wake up as a girl.

  Pam and I made financial provision for our "old age". After transition I found I could not receive my State Pension as the State regarded me as "male". Having taken early retirement from my University position I am fortunate to receive an Occupational Pension. Pam also receives a similar pension after a teaching career of nearly 35 years' service.

  I assume, in order for me to receive my State Pension, our marriage will have to be dissolved. Consequently, our financial arrangements will be in tatters, as we will not be regarded as a married couple. I didn't go through transition for laughs! I nearly ended my life on the cliffs of Gower in October 1995 but sought medical help to confirm what I already knew—Gender Dysphoria.

  I object to having to "register" as a transsexual person. The blind, colour blind, Jewish or Black amongst us do not have to—why should we!!!

  I find it sad that the UK moves on this issue because the Court of Human Rights has brought pressure on our Government. The UK is one of only three other countries in Europe who have refused to recognise folk like myself—namely, Albania, Andorra and Ireland—hardly the most progressive countries in the World. I believe UK legal minds penned the Bill of Human Rights but is one of the very last to adhere to its principles.

  At 55, I didn't just decide to go through transition for laughs—it was essential for my well being—it was something I just HAD to do—survival. I had spent my first 55 years of life as a lie. I had deceived my wife, Pam, my daughter and the rest of my family, friends and University colleagues. For me to survive I HAD to become Fiona.

  I have lost three years of my rightful State Pension and will have to dissolve our marriage to achieve the recognition I deserve. Fortunately, Pam and I have remained the best of friends and I certainly do not wish to jeopardize her financial future. As I previously mentioned, we have made financial provision for our later life and will not depend on state benefits to survive our latter years.

  I understand the Government does not want to permit "same sex" marriages but in our position and those of many others, our marriage took place as man and woman. This has since changed and we do not regard ourselves as married. We remain married for financial reasons and would not apply for a married State Pension if we were allowed to!

17 July 2003

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