From Bad To Worse: World Health Organization Reclassifies Transgender As a Sexual Health Condition

Phaylen Fairchild
5 min readJun 26, 2018

On Monday, June 18th, The World Health Organization announced that in its most recent edition of the International Classification of Diseases, people who identify as Transgender will no longer fall under the category of suffering a mental illness. Many activists around the globe applauded this decision. The justification for the reassignment of Trans-identifying humans to another chapter of the book was that it might help reduce the stigma and bias that its previous classification promoted. From their website:

“During a meeting held in Antigua, Guatemala in May 2000, an expert group convened by the Pan American Health Organization and WHO in collaboration with the World Association for Sexology (WAS) compiled an overview of sexual concerns and problems that should be addressed in order to advance sexual health (PAHO/WHO 2000). Sexual health concerns are life situations that can be addressed through education about sexuality and society-wide actions in order to promote the sexual health of individuals. The health sector has a role to play in assessment, and in providing counselling and care.”

In May of 2000. 18 years ago, and the conference from then has imposed the changes made just last Monday.

So, where did they relocate us to in their renowned Classification of Diseases Directory Revision?

Under the category: “Sexual Health Problems.

You read that right. Now, the state of identifying as Transgender is considered, officially, a “Sexual Health Condition.” While not a mental illness, an illness, nonetheless, but this time, a sexually-related one. I sit in absolute amazement at the overwhelming support this amendment has provoked from organizations, allies and even some Trans folks. In a statement, the advocacy group Transgender Europe (TGEU) called the decision a…

--

--

Phaylen Fairchild

Actor, Filmmaker, LGBTQ+ & Women’s Rights Activist All work copyright phaylens@gmail.com