International News Jul 4, 2021 8:21 PM EST

NHS policy tells trans staff to use whichever gendered facilities they want including showers and changing rooms

A new policy by a foundation trust of Britain's National Health Service includes new guidelines allowing transgender staff, including pre-op transgender people, to use whichever bathroom, shower, or changing room they like.

NHS policy tells trans staff to use whichever gendered facilities they want including showers and changing rooms
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A new policy by a foundation trust of Britain's National Health Service includes new guidelines allowing transgender staff, including pre-op transgender people, to use whichever bathroom, shower, or changing room they like.

Published by Rotherham, Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust, the Staff Trans Equality Policy states that "Trans people are entitled to use single sex facilities in accordance with their gender," according to the document.

A foundation trust is a semi-autonomous organizational unit that operates under the NHS.

The policy, according to the Daily Mail, was reportedly drawn up with the help of Stonewall, an equality rights group.

"It is not acceptable to expect an individual undergoing gender reassignment to use facilities designated for use by those of their birth gender," states the policy. "Following gender reassignment, whether or not this has involved surgical procedures, the individual should be fully supported in using all facilities appropriate to his or her acquired gender."

If colleagues have any issues with this policy, they are not allowed to interfere with the person using the facilities. They instead must go to their manager about the issue.

"Should there be any objections to this; a manager will deal with the objections in a sensitive and understanding way while not denying the Trans person access to facilities appropriate to their lived gender," the document states.

According to the Equality Act 2010, gender reassignment is listed as something, including age, race, and sexual orientation, as something that one cannot be discriminated on.

The act states, though, that the person must be "proposing to undergo, is undergoing or has undergone a process (or part of a process) for the purpose of reassigning the person's sex by changing physiological or other attributes of sex."

This policy takes the Equality Act a step further by ensuring protections for transgender people that have not undergone any gender reassignment operations.

Also addressed by the policy is dress codes. Trans people are entitled to uniforms of their chosen gender.

"If a uniform is in place for the role, managers will ensure that the Trans employee has access to the uniform that best matches with their gender identity and/or gender expression. Some Trans employees, including non-binary employees, may need access to both the male and female uniforms," states the policy. "Managers will be flexible, and will support the preferences of the Trans person wherever possible. Trans staff have the right to comply with any dress codes in a way that reflects their gender identity and gender expression."

The policy also urges managers to be flexible as trans people go through gender reassignment through procedures and appointments that may force them to miss work.

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