Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Thursday, 24 October 2013
Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Social Protection
General Scheme of Gender Recognition Bill 2013: Discussion (Resumed)
I will be very brief. I apologise in advance as the Social Welfare and Pensions Bill will start after the Order of Business and, as spokesperson, I have the difficulty of trying to be in two places at once. I might have to disappear. This has been a useful exercise. I thank everybody. Yesterday, right across the board we had a good airing of the same issues that have come up today. That has been useful.
I have one or two brief questions. If I am not present for the answers I will look at the transcript afterwards. My first question is to Ms Woods. I was interested in the temporary certificate that was mentioned. Could she elaborate further on it because when I asked yesterday about what to do with those aged under 16, I was told that the 2004 Act would deal with intersex people. We have heard today that it does not properly deal with the issue in the context of the court case that was mentioned.
Another question is for Dr. Crowley. Yesterday, we heard reference to the capacity of the health service. What is its capacity in terms of gender reassignment operations? If the restrictions are still in place, there are limited physicians in this country who could make an assessment if that is required under current legislation. I got good responses to the questions I asked yesterday and the issues have been well reflected today.