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Transgender man, 34, loses battle to be named as father on his child’s birth certificate after telling Appeal Court judges that decision to call him mother 'has caused psychological scarring'

Transgender man, 34, loses battle to be named as father on his child’s birth certificate after telling Appeal Court judges that decision to call him mother 'has caused psychological scarring'
  • Freddy McConnell fought for the right to be registered as 'father' or 'parent'  
  • He says forcing him to register as the 'mother' of his child breaches his human right to respect for private and family life
  • Judge today concluded that people who have given birth are legally mothers
A transgender man has today lost a Court of Appeal challenge over being registered as 'mother' on his child's birth certificate.
Freddy McConnell, who was born a woman but transitioned into a man, gave birth to his baby boy, but wants to be registered as 'father' or 'parent'.
He says forcing him to register as the 'mother' of the baby, identified only as YY, breaches his human right to respect for private and family life. 
Freddy McConnell has today lost a Court of Appeal challenge over being registered as 'mother' on his child's birth certificate
Freddy McConnell has today lost a Court of Appeal challenge over being registered as 'mother' on his child's birth certificate
He took the issue to court and lost after a High Court trial before launching a legal challenge to the Court of Appeal.
Mr McConnell is a single parent who was born a woman but now lives as a man following surgery.
Ten days after he legally became a man, he accessed sperm from a donor and because he had decided to keep his womb, was in the position of being a pregnant man. 
Freddy McConnell, a multimedia journalist who works for the Guardian, wants to be registered as 'father' or 'parent'
Freddy McConnell, a multimedia journalist who works for the Guardian, wants to be registered as 'father' or 'parent'
Mr McConnell, a multimedia journalist who works for the Guardian, was biologically able to get pregnant in 2017, and when he gave birth in 2018, was legally a man when his child was born.  
He wanted to be registered as father or parent but a registrar told him that the law required people who give birth to be registered as mothers. 
Mr McConnell took legal action against the General Register Office, which administers the registration of births and deaths in England and Wales. 
He then mounted an appeal after a judge ruled against him in September, following a High Court trial in London.
Sir Andrew McFarlane, president of the Family Division of the High Court and the most senior family court judge in England and Wales, concluded that people who have given birth are legally mothers, regardless of their gender, and said there is a 'material difference between a person's gender and their status as a parent'.
Three appeal judges upheld Sir Andrew's ruling today.
Mr McConnell is a single parent who was born a woman but now lives as a man following surgery
Mr McConnell is a single parent who was born a woman but now lives as a man following surgery
A judge said any change to the law is a matter for Parliament, and not the courts and refused to grant Mr McConnell permission to take his case to the Supreme Court
A judge said any change to the law is a matter for Parliament, and not the courts and refused to grant Mr McConnell permission to take his case to the Supreme Court
Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett, the most senior judge in England and Wales, sitting with Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Singh, said: 'The legislative scheme of the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) required Mr McConnell to be registered as the mother of YY, rather than the father, parent or gestational parent.
'That requirement did not violate his or YY's Article 8 rights (to private and family life, as enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights).
'There is no incompatibility between the GRA and the Convention. In the result we dismiss these appeals.'
The judges said any change to the law is a matter for Parliament, and not the courts.
They considered arguments at a Court of Appeal hearing in London in March. 
The Court of Appeal refused to grant Mr McConnell permission to take his case to the Supreme Court, although he may still pursue an appeal there.
Mr McConnell had previously applied to the court to have his identity — and that of his child — kept out of the public domain.
But after it was revealed that he had made a film about his path to parenthood — inviting the cameras into the delivery suite where he had his baby in a birthing pool — a judge lifted the reporting restrictions applying to Freddy himself.
The judge explained that he could not expect to remain anonymous while simultaneously inviting media scrutiny.
As previously reported by MailOnline, Sir Andrew McFarlane, the president of the Family Division of the High Court and most senior family court judge in England and Wales, ruled against Mr McConnell in September.

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