What protection do workers who have changed their sex have against sex discrimination?

Under the Equality Act 2010, individuals who are proposing to undergo, are undergoing, or have undergone a process (or part of a process) for the purpose of changing their sex, by changing physiological or other attributes of sex, are protected against less favourable treatment. They have the same protection as non-transgender workers who suffer sex discrimination.

The transgender worker is protected from the moment they start to live as a member of the opposite sex.

There is no need for the process to be a medical procedure.

The person is protected if they start but later decide not to continue with the process of gender reassignment.

To change gender for legal purposes (for example to claim gender-related state benefits such as the State Pension), you need a Gender Recognition Certificate. How to apply for a Gender Recognition Certificate.

Also see the useful guide Gender identity: an introductory guide for trade union reps supporting trans members (PDF, 249KB), produced by public services union UNISON and the Scottish Transgender Alliance.

For support and advice on transgender issues in the workplace, see the website of the national charity Press for Change.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.