UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment

United Kingdom (CAT 07-06-2019)

The Committee against Torture considered the sixth periodic report of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (CAT/C/GBR/6 and Corr.1) at its 1740th and 1743rd meetings (see CAT/C/SR.1740 and 1743), held on 7 and 8 May 2019, and adopted the present concluding observations at its 1754th meeting, held on 16 May 2019.

Concluding observations

Intersex persons

  1. While noting that in January 2019 the Government Equalities Office launched a call for evidence to better understand the experiences of intersex persons in the United Kingdom, the Committee remains concerned about reports of cases of unnecessary surgery and other medical treatment with lifelong consequences, including severe pain and suffering, to which intersex children have been subjected. The Committee is further concerned about the lack of legal provisions providing redress and rehabilitation in such cases (arts. 14 and 16).
  2. The State party should ensure that:

(a) The parents or guardians of intersex children receive impartial counselling services and psychological and social support, including information on the possibility of deferring any decision on unnecessary treatment until they can be carried out with the full, free and informed consent of the person concerned;

(b) Persons who have been subjected to such procedures without their consent and resulting in severe pain and suffering obtain redress, including the means for rehabilitation.

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