The University of Amsterdam (UvA) will issue a new degree certificate to transgender Justus Eisfeld as soon as possible. Minister Marja van Bijsterveldt informed the Lower House on Wednesday that educational institutes are now entitled to issue a new diploma to people who have undergone a sex change.
After Justus graduated - as a woman - from the University of Amsterdam, he underwent a sex change to become a man. He asked the UvA to issue a new certificate with his new name. The UvA was in favour of this request, but was prevented from doing so due to the Higher Education Act. This states that each graduate can only be issued a certificate once and Dutch universities have adhered to this law.
The Equal Treatment Commission ruled on Wednesday that the UvA was wrong to not have issued a new degree certificate to Justus. However, representatives of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science recently confirmed that UvA staff had interpreted the law correctly. Van Bijsterveldt now acknowledges, in response to questions from the Lower House, that her ministry's interpretation of the law was too strict.
Karel van der Toorn, president of the UvA's Executive Board, is pleased with the minister's decision. He called Justus to convey the good news and congratulate him on this significant achievement.