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Marin at Pride march: New trans law to Parliament in September

Police estimated that 70-80,000 people took part in the Helsinki Pride march on Saturday.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) spoke with reporters at Senate Square before the Helsinki Pride march on Saturday. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle

Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) said on Saturday that the government will present a new law on transgender rights to Parliament as soon as its autumn session begins in September.

Marin said that the long-planned legislative reform has been delayed because the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has had a heavy workload during the corona pandemic.

"Hopefully we can submit the bill during this summer. It has been carefully prepared and send out for rounds of comments. This is a very important issue to me personally, and it will be given to Parliament as soon as it begins its autumn session," Marin told Yle at the march.

The legislature returns to work on 6 September.

Among other changes, the new law is to change to how paternity and maternity are recorded in the Population Information System. A separate record of paternity or motherhood is planned, which could be changed if a person legally corrects their gender, the daily Helsingin Sanomat reported on Saturday.

Marin spoke to Yle as she joined tens of thousands of people to march in Saturday's Helsinki Pride parade. Marin, who last autumn described growing up in a 'rainbow family', has served as the patron of Helsinki Pride for several years.

"We're celebrating equality," said Marin. "I try to participate every year. Even today, the structures of society put people into unequal positions."

Saturday marked the first Helsinki Pride parade since 2019. Marchers proceeded from the Senate Square to Kaivopuisto Park in very hot weather.

Concerns after Oslo and Oodi incidents

Police estimated that 70-80,000 people took part in the procession.

Around 2.30 pm, they said in a tweet that the event had passed off peacefully and that traffic in the city centre was returning to normal.

Police heard no reports of disruptive behaviour during the event, which came a week after the Pride march in neighbouring Norway was cancelled after a deadly shooting outside an Oslo LGBTQ bar.

A day earlier in Helsinki, police removed agitators attempting to disrupt a Pride week event at Oodi Central Library.

A storytime event for children was being hosted by a drag queen, when protestors tried to disrupt the proceedings, police said. According to library director Anna-Maria Soininvaara, some of the protesters wore swastikas.

This led to confrontations in the lower lobby of the library building. The storytime event in the children's area upstairs was not disturbed. Police removed several individuals but said there were no grounds for detaining them.