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Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Gender Identity Recognition

The worldwide legal status for gender identity recognition
Community Image - Worldwide Gender Identity Recognition

42.1% of all countries around the world legally recognise gender identities

Intersex, transgender, agender, genderfluid, gender non-conforming, non-binary, and all the non-traditional gender identities are all groups within the LGBTQIA+ community that relate specifically to gender. Gender identity groups have historically been underrepresented; however, there have been positive developments over the past five years, and advocates have helped ensure that they gain greater exposure.

The LGBTQIA+ Gender Recognition index focuses on countries that legally recognise gender identities, the requirements required to obtain legal recognition such as sterilisation or reassignment surgery, and whether a government issues legal documentation

Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Equality Index


of countries score high or very high

Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Dollar

$1.4 trillion
added to the world economy

Worldwide LGBTQIA+ Population

212.3 million
people living within communities across the globe

Worldwide Same-Sex Unions or Marriages

73 countries recognise same-sex unions or marriages

Worldwide Legal Gender Recognition

98 countries legally recognise gender identities

Worldwide Gay Conversion Therapy


or 16 countries have laws banning Gay Conversion Therapy

Discover the status of gender identity recognition in any given country…
Gayther Dropdown – Gender Identity (500px)

  2023 SUMMARY

Gayther Gender Recognition - 2023 Statistics
  • 41% or 87.1 million LGBTQIA+ individuals live within countries classified as high or very high regarding gender identity recognition
  • Europe is the continent with the highest number of countries recognising gender identities at 16.3% or 38 countries, followed by Asia at 9.9% or 23 countries
  • Only 2.6% of all countries (6) around the world recognise the third gender; those countries are Bangladesh, Germany, India, Lithuania, the United States of America (USA) and Samoa
  • Asia has the highest concentration of countries requiring surgery at 6.9% or 16 countries


  • Europe is the continent with the highest number of countries recognising gender identities at 16.3% or 38 countries, followed by Asia at 9.9% or 23 countries
  • Africa is the continent with the lowest number of countries recognising gender identities at 2.6% or 6 countries
  • 14.6% or 34 countries around the world require an individual to undergo sexual reassignment surgery, and 4.3% or 10 countries require an individual to be sterilised to change genders legally
  • Europe has the highest concentration of countries requiring sterilisation at 3% or 7 countries, followed by Asia at 1.3% or 3 countries
  • Asia has the highest concentration of countries requiring surgery at 6.9% or 16 countries, followed by Europe at 4.3% or 10 countries
  • Only 2.6% of all countries (6) around the world recognise the third gender; those countries are Bangladesh, Germany, India, Lithuania, the United States of America (USA) and Samoa
  • 27.5% or 64 countries around the world are classified as high or very high concerning gender identities
  • The continents with the largest number of low or very low statuses are Africa at 21.9% or 51 countries, followed by both the Americas and Asia with equal numbers at 13.3% or 31 countries
  • The continents with the largest number of high or very high statuses are Europe at 12% or 28 countries, followed by the Americas at 8.2% or 19 countries
  • 41% or 87.1 million LGBTQIA+ live within countries classified as high or very high, whereas 49% or 104.1 million live within countries classified as low or very low within the gender identity index

Developments from the previous year

  • Colombia’s Constitutional Court ruled in favour of allowing non-binary people to have their gender legally recognized, and the United States of America (USA), for the first time, now offer the option of a non-binary “X” gender option on passports
  • Finland and Switzerland have passed laws allowing trans people to change their legal gender without them needing to be infertile or to have been sterilized before
  • Spain has passed a law called Ley Trans, a bill which allows all transgender people 16 or older to legally change their gender by simply signing a declaration, without the need for prior psychological counselling with a therapist, and transgender people aged 12 to 16 to change their gender under certain conditions legally


Acceptance and coming to terms with a part of what makes you can be challenging for many people. The Gayther pride in series is about celebrating all things relating to sexualities, gender identities and special groups. Showcasing the exceptional people, interesting facts and ways to connect with those unique communities, all designed to help and promote pride in LGBTQIA+ identities


click here  Click on a specific country within the map to find out if laws exist relating to gender identity recognition


From marriages and unions to the decriminalisation of same-sex relationships, discover how well each country treats members of the LGBTQIA+ community. Updated each year, you can learn of the positive and negative developments for every country worldwide. Learn more about LGBTQIA+ Worldwide equality today


Gayther Community - About Gender Identity
The global LGBTQIA+ community is comprised of many groups; however, it will typically fall into one of two main categories, sexuality or gender. From the various research and population estimates over the years, it is believed that the largest groups within the global community fall within the sexuality category. Gender identities, though typically smaller groups, have historically been underrepresented; however, this has been changing. With high profiled or well-known individuals coming out as transgender, genderfluid, inside or outside the gender spectrum, more mainstream media news services have showcased these lesser-known LGBTQIA+ groups.

Gender is made of two components, anatomy and definition. Anatomy is how someone is born, typically male, female or intersex. In contrast, a definition is what we learn about what it means to be male or female. Gender definitions are taught and will vary depending on the culture, society, traditions or history. As we grow up, we are being taught what it means to be a specific gender, resulting in some people not identifying with their gender or sex assigned at birth. Many instead identify as the opposite sex, shifting from masculine or feminine or not identifying as either gender. Once individuals become aware of their true identity, the challenge is to get society and governments to accept who they are through legal recognition.

Gender and how we identify are not only on official documentation or how people address us; but also in the words we use to describe people, objects, or possession. Most languages have masculine and feminine words, and possession is based on whether you identify as male or female. Even English gender titles feature a masculine influence, with male, men or man in female gender titles. The use of non-gendered pronouns helps people that cannot identify with a binary description of male or female, those that shift within the gender spectrum or those that feel gender pronouns do not represent them.

Over the past 50 years, and as the LGBTQIA+ community and gender identities have become better understood, more countries have created laws and protections designed to help people from non-traditional gender identities. Anti-discrimination legalisation ensures LGBTQIA+ individuals are not discriminated against and legal recognition for individuals who want to align their documentation to reflect their true identity. Gender recognition rules vary by country; however, countries typically recognise a change of gender when a person undergoes sterilisation or sex reassignment surgery.


With countries around the world treating members of the LGBTQIA+ community differently, planning an overseas trip can be challenging. With over 233 country and 435 regional guides, Gayther guides provide you with all the information you need when planning your trip. From LGBTQIA equality to essential travel information, discover Gayther guides today


Gayther Gender Recognition - Gender Recognition

Why is legal gender recognition so important?

People who are transgender or from a non-binary identity will often go through years of struggling, trying to come to terms with their true identity. Once they accept and begin the process of changing their lives, many will undergo medical procedures, both surgical and non-surgical. The procedures and processes are often at great personal expense to transform their outer appearance, reflecting their inner self. After all that work, struggle, and an altered external appearance, without legal recognition, many would have official documents, such as birth certificates, national ID cards, passports and driving licenses with their gender or sex assigned at birth and original name. When travelling or required to produce some form of identification, they are constantly reminded of their former self, which no longer represents or reflects who they have become. Legal recognition is more an indication of how any given nation treats people living in that country. The more open and accepting society is, the more they will likely have laws and protections to allow the legal change and definition within official documentation
Gayther Gender Recognition - Sterilisation & Reassignment

What does sterilisation and gender reassignment mean?

The term sterilisation is a medical procedure, both surgical and non-surgical, used on men and women to stop them from reproducing. For women, typically, the fallopian tubes, the tubes through which the fertilised egg passes, are tied or permanently removed to prevent a woman from getting pregnant. For men, typically, a vasectomy will be performed. The surgical procedure ties or cuts the tubes that carry semen, stopping the fertilisation process during intercourse. Gender reassignment is the term for the procedure used for individuals transitioning from male to female (MTF) or female to male (FTM). For MTF procedures, typically, the testicles are removed. The skin from the scrotum is used to make the labia, and tissue from the penis is used to make the neo-clitoris (an artificially created clitoris). For FTM, typically, they will undergo male chest reconstruction, the breasts are removed, a hysterectomy is carried out to remove the ovaries and fallopian tubes, and lastly, the creation of a neo-penis (an artificially created penis) grafted from the patient’s arms, thigh, abdomen or back
Gayther Gender Recognition - Identities

What is the difference between transgender and other non-binary identities?

Transgender relates to individuals who do not identify with their sex or gender at birth. Typically, transgender individuals will identify and feel that they belong to the opposite sex to their sex or gender at birth. So effectively, a man identifies as a female or a female that identifies as male. Non-binary or genderfluid identities are different because some groups cannot identify as male or female. In contrast, others will shift between feminine and masculine, and others will identify off or somewhere within the gender spectrum. Simply put, transgender individuals identify with the gender opposite to their own. In contrast, no single gender defines non-binary people


For many people that are transitioning or those that identify with gender-fluid identities, pronouns and how they are addressed become important. Learn more about some of the most commonly used personal pronouns, as well as a range of email templates, images and name badges all designed to positively promote individual pronouns


Common phrases and terms in over 80 languages

Please select a country from the drop-down list to discover common phrases relating to gender identity recognition

Gayther Useful Phrases - Gender Recognition (500px)