A study conducted in Russia, which is the first of it’s kind, has revealed that half of transgender people in the country are rejected due to their gender identity.
The study reads: “Many employers are concerned about [the] risk of problems during inspections that might arise in case they hire a transgender person whose appearance does not match their passport data.”
The study also found that 62% of respondents don’t apply for jobs due to fear of rejection, alongside 41% of people avoiding seeing a doctor or using public health services and 34% choosing not to go to school or university.
One respondent said: “Before I got new ID I did not travel anywhere if I could help it. I didn’t visit major museums where they could have asked to see my passport to prove Russian citizenship… I refrained from buying cigarettes and alcohol when I was alone.”
According to the findings, these hesitations stem from a long and complicated procedure when trying to change official documents, which can take years. In order to have their gender legally recognised, trans people in Russia must undergo psychiatric evaluation with a medical exam, prove they have undergone hormone replacement therapy, apply to amend birth records and replace all official documents.
The study says: “Transgender persons often face abuse, workplace difficulties and are denied various services when compelled to show an ID that does not match their appearance and identity.”
This of course can add unnecessary stress and complications to even the simplest things, as if one piece of documentation is not changed it could lead to discrimination and harassment.
The study also finds that “[trans people] cannot afford medical examinations, therapy and legal gender recognition, whereas without ID and other documents matching their appearance and identity they cannot find steady employment.”
So, in essence, transgender people in Russia can find themselves trapped in a horrible cycle where they cannot afford to make the changes necessary to get legally recognised, and they cannot find a job due to not being able to change those vital documents.