Yo-Ling Chen

Transgender Issues Enter Third Party Politics

In the past three months, transgender issues have gained unprecedented attention within third party politics in Taiwan, with the Taiwan Solidarity Union rebranding itself as the only political party against abolishing compulsory surgery for changing one’s legal gender and Green Party Taiwan putting forward Taiwan’s first transgender woman to run for office, Abby Wu, as an at-large legislative candidate. This is the first time in Taiwan’s history that transgender issues have been explicitly incorporated into party campaigning. While transgender issues have yet to become a campaign issue in mainstream party politics, the current standoff between the two parties offers a first look into how such politicization would likely play out as the struggle for transgender rights in Taiwan continues...

Supreme Administrative Court Rules Against Compulsory Surgery For Changing Legal Gender

On September 21, 2023, the Supreme Administrative Court of the Judicial Yuan nullified the Kaohsiung High Administrative Court's ruling on a transgender woman’s legal gender change appeal and ordered a rehearing. With regards to Ministry of Interior executive order #0970066240, which requires people assigned male at birth to surgically remove their penis and testis and people assigned female at birth to remove their breasts, uterus, and ovaries in order to change their legal gender, the SAC’s decision clearly states that this rule “seriously infringes upon bodily rights, medical rights, human dignity, and right of personality”. Multiple transgender rights organizations, such as the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights and Taiwan Non-binary Queer Sluts, have celebrated the ruling...

Amendments of “Three Gender Equality Laws” Passed in Wake of #MeToo Cases

Two months after the wave of #MeToo cases that began in late May, amendments were proposed and passed during the month of July to Taiwan’s “Three Gender Equality Laws”: more specifically, amendments to the Gender Equity Education Act were passed on July 28th, and amendments to the Act of Gender Equality in Employment and the Sexual Harassment Prevention Act were passed on July 31st...

Lisbeth Wu Case Sent Back to Taipei High Administrative Court

This past Friday, the Constitutional Court of the Judicial Yuan decided not to move forward with a constitutional interpretation for Lisbeth Wu’s case regarding regulations requiring proof of surgery to change one’s legal gender. The specific regulation under scrutiny is Ministry of Interior executive order #0970066240, which requires people assigned male at birth to surgically remove their penis and testis and people assigned female at birth to remove their breasts, uterus, and ovaries in order to change their legal gender. Over the past few days, people following Taiwan’s trans rights movement have attempted to make sense of the Constitutional Court’s decision to send Wu’s case back to the Taipei High Administrative Court...

Fourth Annual Trans March Brings Visibility as Taiwan’s Trans Rights Movement Gains Momentum and Draws Opposition

Over 3,000 people gathered in Ximending this evening to participate in the fourth annual Taiwan Trans March organized by the Taiwan Tongzhi (LGBTQ+) Hotline Association. This year’s march is the first in-person Trans March since the historic gains in Taiwan’s trans rights movement last fall. At the same time, trans-exclusionary radical feminists (TERFs) have also mobilized, almost exclusively online, against the trans rights movement in Taiwan. As trans issues continue to enter into public discourse and legal reform proceeds at its own pace, visibility and support for Taiwan’s trans community has never been more crucial...

Regional Forums Discuss Mixed Indigenous Identity and Legal Recognition in Taiwan

This past Friday in Pingtung City, the Mixed Indigenous Youth Forum Working Group (MIYF) held its fifth and final regional forum on the life experiences of Indigenous youth from mixed backgrounds. Combined with the other regional forums held in Taichung, Taipei, Taitung, and Hualien, MIYF discussed and recorded over 50 participants’ life stories pertaining to their Indigenous identity journey and variable engagements with Indigenous legal status...

Mixed Background Indigenous Peoples and Their Struggle for Legal Reform

In 2017, Nikal Kabala’an, an Amis woman, carried her first newborn daughter to the Taipei City Da’an District Household Registration Office to register her baby’s birth. Nikal and her husband, who is Han, decided to register their child under Nikal’s husband’s Mandarin surname with the intention of simultaneously registering a traditional Amis name to continue her Indigenous heritage into the next generation. However, she was informed at the Household Registration Office that she could not register her child under her husband’s surname and a traditional Amis name, and thus had to choose only one...

The Struggle for Transgender Rights Continues With Taiwan’s First Legal Gender Change Without Providing Proof of Surgery

A variety of events happened this past week with regards to the ongoing struggle for transgender rights in Taiwan, including Taiwan’s first successful legal gender change without submitting proof of surgery, Lisbeth Wu’s second preliminary proceedings, and the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights' second Transgender Film Festival. These gains for transgender rights have not gone unchallenged though, as the past two months have also included increasing opposition...

LGBTQ+ Groups Celebrate Ruling Against Surgery Requirement for Legal Gender Change

This morning at 10:00 AM the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights hosted a press conference regarding yesterday afternoon’s Taipei High Administrative Court ruling against regulations requiring proof of surgical intervention to change one’s legal gender. The historic ruling in favor of plaintiff Xiao E found existing legal gender change regulations to be unconstitutional. Assuming that this ruling does not get appealed, Xiao E will be able to change her legal gender and become Taiwan’s first transgender woman to do so without submitting proof of surgery...