Peru Govt Classifies Transgender, Nonbinary, and Intersex Individuals as “Mentally Ill,”

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The Peruvian government has officially categorized transgender, nonbinary, and intersex people as “mentally ill” in a move aimed at ensuring comprehensive coverage of mental health services within the country’s public health system, reports The Telegraph.

This decision has stirred widespread criticism and backlash across Peru, particularly in light of recent legislative actions such as the banning of references to gender equality in school textbooks. This ban has had detrimental effects on educational efforts aimed at preventing domestic violence and femicides.

Health Minister César Vásquez has refrained from addressing the controversy directly. However, he has defended President Dina Boluarte’s decision to issue the declaration. President Boluarte herself is facing scrutiny over her involvement in acquiring expensive jewelry, including a £40,000 diamond-encrusted Cartier bracelet, amid allegations of corruption within her administration.

The president’s brother, Nicanor Boluarte, was recently arrested for allegedly selling high-ranking government positions. In response, President Boluarte dismantled an elite police anti-corruption unit and attempted, unsuccessfully, to suppress official statistics revealing a rise in poverty.

Percy Mayta-Tristán, a medical researcher at Lima’s Scientific University of the South, pointed out that while the decree may have been well-intentioned, it demonstrates a lack of understanding of the complexities surrounding LGBT issues. He warned that labeling members of the LGBT community as mentally ill could pave the way for harmful practices like conversion therapy, especially in Peru’s deeply conservative society where LGBTQ+ rights are limited.


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