Trans in Japan: Sterilisation and legal gender recognition


Fumino Sugiyama is a transgender man, but Japanese law means he is not legally recognised as male.

In Japan, you have to be sterilised or “indefinitely incapable of reproduction” before being able to legally change gender.

Researchers say reports of involuntary sterilisation have been seen in at least 38 countries worldwide over the past 20 years, with women and marginalised groups worst hit by this “gross violation of rights”.

We meet Fumino, and another transgender man who decided to get sterilised, to hear the impact of Japan’s policy on their lives.

You can watch the full documentary, Forced to Face Sterilisation, on BBC World News from Friday 16 April.

Filmed by Sybilla Patrizia

Produced, directed and edited by Natalia Zuo

Executive produced by Claire Williams

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