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Trans and Non-Binary Guidance


At YUSU and the University of York we recognise the value of a diverse community. We do not discriminate against people on the grounds of gender identity or gender reassignment. It is really important to us that transgender and non-binary students feel welcome.

Here is an overview of the support and services available for transgender and non-binary students, to ensure you feel welcome and represented as a member of YUSU.

Definitions

  • By ‘trans’ and ‘transgender’ we mean people whose gender identity differs from the sex (male or female) they were assigned at birth.

  • By ‘non-binary’ we mean people who have a gender identity which is in between or beyond ‘male’ or ‘female’, or who have no gender either permanently or for some of the time.

Pronouns

If you want, you are able to register with your chosen pronoun on University documentation - speak to a Student Advisor if you need assistance in doing this.

If you prefer to use a gender neutral title, you can choose the title ‘Mx’ when registering on our student record system.

Here at YUSU many of our staff and student representatives choose to place pronoun identifiers as part of their email signature, to ensure anyone we contact is aware of our pronoun preference and will be less likely to misgender someone. You can easily set one of these in your student email settings.


Facilities

Across campus (both West and East) there are gender neutral toilets available for any student or staff member to use.

A list of the exact locations is available here, (just search “all gender toilets”), but some of the buildings these are in include;

  • YUSU/Yourspace (Campus West)

  • Spring Lane Building (Campus West)

  • The Piazza (Campus East)

 

At college level a large portion of our sports teams are also mixed and multi gender. You are also able to compete in College Varsity (against Durham) in gendered teams if you wish.


Support and Advice

There are loads of services and groups available for you to access as a York student, both on and off campus. They’re broken down here into: Representation - helping you get your voice heard; On Campus Support - services offered by YUSU and the University; and Wider Support - services available in York city and around the country.


Representation

  • Within your college you will have a college LGBT+ officer, who works alongside the JCRC, the YUSU LGBTQ Officer and the SABBs.They’re name should be available on your college website. They are a great first point of call if you have any questions.  

  • YUSU LGBTQ Part Time Officer and Community and Wellbeing Sabbatical Officer. Again, you can message these officers with any questions you may have and they can signpost you to the relevant services. Then can also help you with any campaigns you want the union to run, or help advocate for any specific needs identified by trans or non-binary students that aren’t currently provided

  • LGBTQ Network -  This group is made up of all University of York students who self-identify within the LGBTQ community, with representatives on the committee for lesbian, gay, bi, trans, queer, asexual, aromantic, and intersex people. They run meetings, campaigns, events, and socials throughout the year
     


On Campus Support

  • Student Advisers (Student Hub) - Our Student Advisers can offer advice on a range of issues including changing your name, title and gender with the University, government departments and on identification documents.

  • Open Door - Our Open Door Practitioners can offer psychological and mental health support. They can provide either crisis support or more long term support depending on your need.  You can self-refer to Open Door using their online form found here.

  • ASC (Advice and Support Centre) - YUSU’s own independent advice and support team, which provides confidential advice on academic, personal and welfare issues. Based in the YUSU offices in James College, get in touch with them on asc@yusu.org to book an appointment.

  • Post Graduate Advice - Postgraduate students can also contact the GSA advice service for confidential and independent support and guidance. Get in touch with them here.


Wider York Support

  • York LGBT Forum - they help ensure that the rights and interests of LGBT people are represented in York and North Yorkshire. They run workshops designed to help people along with their transition as well as more general LGBT+ social events

  • Yorkshire Mesmac - they provide a range of  sexual health services for the LGBTQ community as well as others affected by HIV. Services and support include:

    • HIV and STI testing drop-in sessions

    • 1-1 support

    • Trans & non-binary sexual health sessions

    • LGBT Youth Group for ages 14-25

    • Sex worker sexual health drop-in

    • Free condoms and lubricants

Mesmac also run a weekly HIV and STI testing drop-in at the University of York every Tuesday during term-time from 12pm-2pm in ARC/110 (Interview Room 2,  Alcuin Research Resource Centre Campus West)


Changing your Name, Title, or Gender

Changing your name

  • If you are age 16 or over, changing your name is relatively simple and can be done free of charge. The most straightforward way to change your name is by making a change of name deed, commonly known as a deed poll. The deed would have to be signed in front of two witnesses who will also have to sign the deed (student hub can help with providing witnesses).

  • A change of name deed would be accepted by: the University, government departments, local authorities, banks and other agencies. You can make your own change of name deed here.

Changing your title

  • When you are informing companies that you have changed your name you will also need to let them know which title you prefer to use. You can usually only use a title such as Miss, Mrs, Ms, Mr or Mx unless you are permitted to use an alternative title such as Dr, Professor or a royal title

  • With the exception of ‘professional’ titles like Dr and Professor, titles do not require documentation to change - you don’t need a change of name deed in order to change documents from, say, ‘Miss’ to ‘Mx’

Changing your gender

  • To change your gender you will find there are different rules, depending on the type of document or agency. Some agencies may allow you to change your name and title as you wish, others may require a Gender Recognition Certificate or another document confirming your change of gender is likely to be permanent. You can apply for a Gender Recognition Certificate here.

  • Gender Recognition Certificates are not required to change your gender on documents such as UK driving licences, UK passports or bank details - all you need for these is a doctor’s note confirming that your change of gender is likely to be permanent


Further information about changing your details


Reporting Problems

York is an inclusive campus and we do not tolerate discrimination or mistreatment of our students in anyway. If you find yourself a victim of any form of hate speech, harassment, or violent behaviour there are several avenues you can take.

In an emergency:

  • If you are on campus call Security services - 01904 323333

  • If you are off campus call North Yorkshire Police on 999

  • As a general piece of advice we encourage all students to download the free SafeZone app, a service that makes it easier to alert security if you need help while you are on campus.

Non-emergency:

You don’t need to do all of these, these are just options. Reporting the incident is very important, but do it in the way you feel most comfortable.

or:

 

Here is an online portal for reporting hate crime to the police - if possible it is also good to report all criminal incidents to the police as well as the university.

The group Supporting Victims, can also support you with this process and afterwards. They provide free advice, information and support to victims of crime. They can also make referrals to Victim Support for 1-1 appointments - call 01609 643100 or go online to speak to them.