A LEADING Scottish sexual equality group has welcomed a report which calls on the UK Government to ensure fair and equal treatment for transgender people.

An in-depth inquiry by the Women and Equalities Committee at Westminster has made 30 recommendations on a wide range of policy areas and has urged the Government to take action in a hard-hitting report.

The conclusion of the House of Commons inquiry says there is “still a long way to go to ensure equality for transgender people”.

They want full equality for trans people, tougher protection from discrimination, better service provision, a commitment to international best practice, and a review on issues facing non-binary and non-gendered people.

The committee received over 250 evidence submissions, many of them from individual trans people, including input from the Scottish Transgender Alliance.

It also held evidence sessions with six government Ministers, as well as transgender organisations and campaigners, health and other public sector professionals, and academics.

Scottish Transgender Alliance co-ordinator James Morton said: “We gave evidence, written and oral, to the inquiry and we are very, very pleased with the report recommendations.

“I think that if you look at the progress of transgender equality over the past decade or two there have been massive improvements in social attitudes towards transgender people. For so long people haven’t understood what transgender means.

“I feel this report is a fundamental step forward in attitudes by the UK parliament.

“I think if we can get the recommendations implemented, then hopefully in Scotland the Scottish Parliament will go even further, and that will make a profound difference to transgender people’s lives.

“There is still a long way to go but this is an important milestone,” he went on to say.

The group is running an equal recognition campaign for reform of the Gender Recognition Act to be undertaken by the Scottish Parliament because they feel that’s where they would get the best legislation for Scotland. Jackie Driver, lead director for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues at the Equality and Human Rights Commission, said: “We welcome today’s landmark report on transgender equality.

“Despite the marked progress that has been made towards achieving equality for trans people, prejudice and barriers still remain.”

The report calls for trans people to be treated equally and fairly.

Committee Chair Maria Miller said: “Fairness and equality are basic British values.

“Britain leads the world in recognising lesbian, gay and bisexual rights, but despite some welcome progress, we are still failing trans people in so many ways.

“The committee took evidence on a wide range of issues including: gender recognition and equality legislation, health services, transphobia and hate crime, courts, prisons, education, data protection, official documents – and more.”

She said high levels of transphobia are experienced by individuals on a daily basis and that it was a very serious problem.