In the wrong body

Between bureaucracy and prejudices, two stories of living with a transgender identity in Switzerland. (SRF/

This content was published on April 19, 2015 - 11:00

Niklaus Flütsch has reservations about the red tape surrounding his transgender identity. He is a successful gynaecologist who lives as a man. But as he was born a woman and doesn’t want to go through the bureaucratic procedures to change his official records, his passport still has an “F” next to the word gender.

Sabine Hiss (not her real name) was dismissed from her job because of being stigmatised for being a woman in a man’s body.

The label transgender or transsexual denotes a person whose gender identity does not match entirely or in part with the person’s gender at birth. Someone in this position is born with typical male or female anatomies but feel they have been born into the “wrong body” and their identity lies elsewhere on the traditional gender continuum. 

People who identify as transgender or transsexual often face discrimination on the workplace, as highlighted by a study conducted in 2012 by the Transgender Network SwitzerlandExternal link (TGNS). Many have been dismissed from their employment because of their sexual identity. Among transgender people, the unemployment rate is 6 times higher than the rest of the population. 

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