Chapter 1: How To Respond To This Consultation
What this consultation is about
1.01. This consultation is seeking views on the draft Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill (“the Bill”), which would change for Scotland the way in which people can obtain a Gender Recognition Certificate (“GRC”).
Why we are consulting
1.02. We are consulting following the statement by the Cabinet Secretary for Social Security and Older People to Parliament on 20 June 2019. In this statement, the Cabinet Secretary announced that the Scottish Government would consult on a draft Bill to reform the way in which applicants from Scotland apply for a GRC. This current consultation follows the earlier consultation on the principles of reforming the Gender Recognition Act 2004 (“the GRA”).
Responding to this Consultation
1.03. We are inviting responses to this consultation by 17 March 2020. No account will be taken of responses which are late and no extensions can be given to this deadline.
Through Citizen Space
1.04. Please respond to this consultation using the Scottish Government’s consultation hub, Citizen Space (http://consult.gov.scot). Access and respond to this consultation online at https://consult.gov.scot/family-law/gender-recognition-reform-scotland-bill. You can save and return to your responses while the consultation is still open. Please ensure that consultation responses are submitted by 17 March 2020. If you use the consultation hub to respond, you will receive a copy of your response via email.
1.05. If you are unable to respond using the consultation hub, please complete the Respondent Information Form and Consultation Questions and send them to:
Gender Recognition Reform
St. Andrew’s House
1.06. We will not accept responses submitted by email.
No need to answer all of the questions
1.07. We welcome responses to some or all of the questions on Citizen Space or in hard copy.
Handling your response
1.08. If you respond using the consultation hub, you will be directed to the About You page before submitting your response. Please indicate how you wish your response to be handled and, in particular, whether you are content for your response to published. If you ask for your response not to be published, we will regard it as confidential, and we will treat it accordingly. The names of organisations responding to the consultation will be published.
1.09. All respondents should be aware that the Scottish Government is subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 and would therefore have to consider any request made to it under the Act for information relating to responses made to this consultation exercise. All respondents are also asked to remember that this is a government consultation process and no matter how strong your views we ask that you use acceptable language to express them.
Next steps in the process
1.11. Where respondents have given permission for their response to be made public responses will be made available to the public at http://consult.gov.scot. Before publishing the Scottish Government will need to check that responses do not contain material which:
- Raises concerns about data protection (for example, a response which gives personal details about the person responding to the consultation or about another person);
- Raises concerns about copyright (for example, a response which encloses an academic article which is or may be subject to copyright restrictions);
- Is potentially defamatory (for example, a statement which could damage a person’s or an organisation’s reputation);
- Is offensive (for example, contains transphobia or misogyny, uses swear words or contains language which is derogatory about an individual or a group in society);
- Contains references to on-going court cases.
1.12. We will analyse all responses but we will not publish responses which contain material outlined above. Therefore, a response which raises concerns about data protection or raises concerns about copyright or is potentially defamatory or has offensive material or contains references to on-going court cases will not be published.
1.13. Following the closing date, all responses will be analysed and considered along with any other available evidence to help us. An analysis report will be made available. The Scottish Government’s intention is to introduce a Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill into Parliament during this current Parliamentary session (which ends in 2021).
Comments and complaints
1.14. If you have any comments about how this consultation exercise has been conducted, please send them to the contact address above or:
Telephone: 0131 244 4955