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High Court hears sex-change cases

The High Court yesterday reserved judgment on whether two transsexuals should have the right to change their sexual identity on their birth certificates.

The two applicants P and G, who cannot be named for legal reasons, applied for a judicial review of the "distressing, humiliating and embarrassing" refusal of the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages to allow them to alter their sex from male to female on their birth certificates. The decision could affect thousands of people who have undergone "gender reassignment" treatment.

At an industrial tribunal which opened in Manchester yesterday, Sonia Carmichael, 33, who got a job as a hotel kitchen porter using her old name of George Sneddona, alleged sex discrimination by Granada Theme Park and Hotels Ltd, claiming she was sacked after the management discovered she was having hormone treatment for a sex change.