SWITZERLAND – The World Health Organization (WHO) – a specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for international public health – has announced they will be updating the organization’s current “gender mainstreaming manual” to now state that gender goes “beyond non-binary” and that “sex is not limited to male or female.”
The WHO’s current gender guidance purports that gender exists on a wide spectrum, ranging from male to female; however, the updated language in their gender manual will take that viewpoint one step father, reports say.
According to the WHO website, the new gender guidelines will highlight and expand upon “the concept of intersectionality, which looks at how gender power dynamics interact with other hierarchies of privilege or disadvantage, resulting in inequality and differential health outcomes for different people.”
In addition, the update also claims that the organization will be “going beyond non-binary approaches to gender and health to recognize gender and sexual diversity, or the concepts that gender identity exists on a continuum and that sex is not limited to male or female.”
The change in WHO’s gender guidance was slammed by Jenny Gamble, a professor in the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health at Coventry University, as being unscientific and medically problematic.
“It is a dismissal of basic biology, and a mistake,” she said. “Biology is a key determinant of health and illness. Not being clear about basic biology opens the door to a range of problems, including very poor health communication but also distorted data.”
Others have taken exception with the WHO’s claim that there are more than two sexes.
“The wording regarding there being more than male and female sexes is concerning,” Dr. Karleen Gribble told The Daily Mail. “The website says that the handbook is being updated in light of new scientific evidence and conceptual progress on gender, health and development. Rather, the idea that there are more than two sexes, is a postmodern, unscientific understanding that should not be supported by the WHO.”