Family law: Child told not to wear girls clothes in custody case

On behalf of Gary Kirk of Kirk Montoute LLP posted in Family Law on Wednesday, September 20, 2017.

A couple is fighting over the custody of a five-year-old child who was born male but identifies as female and wants to wear girls’ clothing. The child’s mother is supportive of the child, but the father says it’s the mother who has the child mixed up. Under the family law umbrella in Alberta, one judge ruled the child could only wear girls clothes privately and another judge upheld that decision. However, a third judge removed the restriction and said the child could choose what clothes to wear and when.

A spokesperson for the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services at the University of Alberta said these issues shouldn’t even be heading to court, especially in light of human rights legislation changes regarding gender identity. The spokesperson said this case clearly points out that the next frontier of awareness for the courts concerns gender identity, especially where children are involved. A member of Alberta’s Trans Equality Society is supporting the mother and urging her to launch a human rights complaint against the first two judges in the case.

The second judge awarded custody to the father — a ruling that is still being upheld. She said the boy is having gender identity issues but is too young to identify as transgender. The mother continues her fight for custody.

Family law issues can get messy. Alberta residents embroiled in child custody cases may find the help of an attorney experienced in family law to be of the utmost help. A lawyer can suggest what steps to take next in a custody situation and help a client through the sometimes difficult process. 

Source: globalnews.ca, “Judges in Alberta custody case ordered child not to wear girls clothes in public“, Chris Purdy, Accessed on Sept. 11, 2017

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