Welcome to the Transgender portal

A transgender person (often shortened to trans) is someone whose gender identity differs from that typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth. Some transgender people who desire medical assistance to transition from one sex to another identify as transsexual. Transgender, often shortened as trans, is also an umbrella term; in addition to including people whose gender identity is the opposite of their assigned sex (trans men and trans women), it may also include people who are non-binary or genderqueer. Other definitions of transgender also include people who belong to a third gender, or else conceptualize transgender people as a third gender. The term may also include cross-dressers or drag kings and drag queens in some contexts. The term transgender does not have a universally accepted definition, including among researchers.


Being transgender is distinct from sexual orientation, and transgender people may identify as heterosexual (straight), homosexual (gay or lesbian), bisexual, asexual, or otherwise, or may decline to label their sexual orientation. The opposite of transgender is cisgender, which describes persons whose gender identity matches their assigned sex. Accurate statistics on the number of transgender people vary widely, in part due to different definitions of what constitutes being transgender. Some countries, such as Canada, collect census data on transgender people. Generally, fewer than 1% of the worldwide population are transgender, with figures ranging from <0.1% to 0.6%.

Many transgender people experience gender dysphoria, and some seek medical treatments such as hormone replacement therapy, gender-affirming surgery, or psychotherapy. Not all transgender people desire these treatments, and some cannot undergo them for financial or medical reasons.

The legal status of transgender people varies by jurisdiction. Many transgender people experience transphobia, or violence or discrimination towards transgender people, in the workplace, in accessing public accommodations, and in healthcare. In many places, they are not legally protected from discrimination. Several cultural events are held to celebrate the awareness of transgender people, including Transgender Day of Remembrance and International Transgender Day of Visibility, and the transgender flag is a common transgender pride symbol. (Full article...)

Selected article

The Transgender Pride Flag, created by American transgender woman Monica Helms in 1999, and first shown at a pride parade in Phoenix, Arizona, United States, in 2000

This article addresses the history of transgender people in the United States from prior to Western contact until the present. There are a few historical accounts of transgender people that have been present in the land now known as the United States at least since the early 1600s. Before Western contact, some Native American tribes had third gender people whose social roles varied from tribe to tribe. People dressing and living differently from the gender roles typical of their sex assigned at birth and contributing to various aspects of American history and culture have been documented from the 17th century to the present day. In the 20th and 21st centuries, advances in gender-affirming surgery as well as transgender activism have influenced transgender life and the popular perception of transgender people in the United States.

Selected biography

Sir Ewan Forbes, 11th Baronet, MBChB (6 September 1912 – 12 September 1991), was a Scottish nobleman, general practitioner and farmer. Forbes was a trans man; he was christened Elizabeth Forbes-Sempill and officially registered as the youngest daughter of John, Lord Sempill. After an uncomfortable upbringing, he began presenting as a man in the 1930s, following a course of medical treatments in Germany. He formally re-registered his birth as male in 1952, changing his name to Ewan, and was married a month later.

In 1965, he stood to inherit the baronetcy of his elder brother William, Lord Sempill, together with a large estate. This inheritance was challenged by his cousin, who argued that the re-registration was invalid; under this interpretation, Forbes would legally be considered a woman, and thus unable to inherit the baronetcy. The legal position was unclear, and it took three years before a ruling by the Court of Session, which held him to be intersex, finally led to the Home Secretary recognising his claim to the title. The case was heard in great secrecy, with the effect that it was unable to be considered in other judgments on the legal recognition of gender variance, but has become more widely known since his death in 1991.

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When I was perceived as a black man I became a threat to public safety. When I was dressed as myself, it was my safety that was threatened.

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