Noah and his parents are speaking up to stop children born with an intersex variation being operated on as an infant without the consent of the child.
Noah’s not alone. Around 1.7 percent of babies born in Australia are intersex, born with physical sex characteristics that are less common, varying from social or medical norms for male or female bodies. Just as skin and hair colour vary along a spectrum, so do our sex characteristics. But many intersex people still don’t have a say in medical procedures performed on their bodies which modify their sex characteristics. These procedures can have lifelong consequences.
The I in LGBTIQ+ refers to those of us born with these bodily variations of sex characteristics. Like everyone else, intersex people have diverse genders and sexualities, defined by their hearts and minds, not their body parts.
Our community fights alongside intersex people because everyone should be able to make their own choices about what happens to their own body. It’s about equality, for all of us.
That’s why, together with Intersex Human Rights Australia, we’re coming together to support Noah and his loving family in their mission to end unnecessary medical procedures that modify the sex characteristics of intersex people without their consent. But if we are to achieve this change we need to lift up the voices of intersex people to raise awareness of what it means to be intersex, and what they want to be changed.
All human bodies are different and intersex variations are a natural part of human diversity. By letting doctors perform unnecessary medical procedures that modify people’s sex characteristics without their consent, governments deny intersex people the right to non-discriminatory healthcare that affirms their diversity. That’s why intersex people across Australia have long advocated that governments end these harmful practices. Momentum is building, with the ACT and Victoria committing publicly to introduce new laws soon, but there’s more to be done. Help Noah build that momentum, by sharing his story.