Leaving no transgender people behind - newagebd.net

Leaving no transgender people behind - newagebd.net
By: Transgender Posted On: December 03, 2022 View: 199

Leaving no transgender people behind - newagebd.net

The Sustainable Development Goals are considered the most unique and inclusive development strategy in the history of human civilisation. That is why the transformative promise of the SDGs is ‘Leave no one behind’. Among the 17 goals, SDG-5 is the most crucial for ensuring social balance. The main theme of which is ‘Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls’. But surprisingly, the 9 targets and 14 indicators of SDG-5 do not explicitly specify the status of transgender people.

Consequently, the rights of transgender people have not been properly highlighted in the policies of various developing countries. Since 2016, all member states of the United Nations have formulated and implemented their own national policies in light of the SDGs. However, millions of transgender people have been marginalised since time immemorial. And most of the developing countries are plagued with terrible prejudices about this community.

People in developing countries, such as those in the South Asian region, lack a clear understanding of sex, gender, and gender identity. Consequently, they use these terms interchangeably and cannot distinguish between sex and gender. The effects of this ignorance severely disrupt the natural evolution of this helpless community. Accordingly, transgender people are deprived of human dignity in most countries. They are sometimes forced to flee their homes and live behind the invisible and impenetrable walls of so-called civilised society, where family is the cradle of human culture. Consequently, the concept of social values remains elusive to them, and inconsistency is naturally observed in their behaviour. Therefore, in many cases, no one wants to hire them even if they are capable. It is really disappointing that even after seven years of sustainable development journey, this is the common scenario for trans people in most of the developing countries.

In this reality, some developing countries, like Bangladesh, have recognised transgender people as ‘third’ gender. But their position is not yet specified in gender-sensitive laws like the Inheritance Act or the Jail Code, etc. There is also considerable confusion about the statistics of the transgender population in most of the developing countries.

In this context, it is necessary to incorporate transgender-related realistic targets and indicators into SDG-5 so that the member states of the United Nations can develop effective policies to clarify the real identity of transgender people and ensure their rehabilitation.

In this regard, policymakers have to remember that the normality of transgender people cannot be established just by recognising them as belonging to a third gender or by arranging seminars and symposiums. Even if some of them are established as trained productive members of society, the societal attitude will not change. Initiatives should be taken to develop their overall cultural and humanitarian values.

For this purpose, the transgender community should be taken through an integrated process so that their behaviour, sense of decency, human values and skills can be developed in accordance with the expectations of the relevant society. In this regard, it is essential to identify each and every member of the transgender community and bring them under an integrated programme. At the same time, it is important to clarify the normality of transgender people by introducing the meaning of the terms sex, gender and gender identity to our policymakers, social activists and the general public so as to release them from the maze of prejudice and allow them to grow within their own family and culture. No parent should feel embarrassed about a ‘transgender’ child. We must put an end to this cruel story of humiliation.

Dr Mohammed Fazlur Rahman Khan is an assistant professor of accounting, Mymensingh Government College.

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