26. December 2020

Special new information for transgender refugees

In the asylum process and when it comes to refugee accommodations, transgender persons face particular challenges. Moreover, many transgender refugees want to go through a transition in Germany. Some have already started this undertaking in their home countries or during their escape, others want to start the journey in Germany. Thus, they are looking for reliable information. The website Queer Refugees Deutschland now offers a guide for transgender refugees and migrants. However, in reality, it is often extremely difficult for transgender persons who are going through the asylum process to receive the specific medical services they need. The LGBTIQ+ organization Schwulenberatung Berlin has published a related expertise, which focuses on the specific legal situation of transgender persons in the asylum process.

In recent years, the LGBTIQ+ refugee issue has gained significant visibility and attention. Nevertheless, the specific needs of transgender refugees have only been minimally considered in the development of consulting materials. As a result, Cologne’s LGBTIQ+ advisory office rubicon and the trans association Netzwerk Geschlechtliche Vielfalt Trans* NRW have developed a guide that targets specifically transgender refugees. The guide explains terminology, provides information on the steps towards transition that can be taken in Germany and lists helpful contacts to trans organizations and the trans community. LSVD project Queer Refugees Deutschland has adapted and translated this guide, so that the content is now available on its website in nine languages under the Trans+ section.

Besides reliable asylum process and accommodations information, many transgender persons need medical services in conjunction with their transition. However, while the asylum proceedings are ongoing, they only have limited access to medical services; all too often the medical services they need are therefore blocked. The expert evaluation Zugang zu trans*spezifischen medizinischen Leistungen für Personen im Asylverfahren recently published by the Schwulenberatung Berlin thus takes aim at the medical services entitlement of transgender persons from a legal perspective. Authors Dr. Lena Kreck and Maya Markwald present the legal grounds as to why transgender persons are entitled to full access to medical services they need in conjunction with their transition even while the asylum process is ongoing.