“How will your child be benefiting from contact with you?” – Trans*woman is declined parental rights again

On 25th of November, the closing hearing on the lawfulness of granting parental rights to transgender woman Pasha Kantanovskaya took place. Already on 5th of August, the Luberetskiy district court decided to hear evidence in form of a psychological expertise on the existence of any mental illnesses and to determine, if any medical reason speaks against contact between Pasha and her son, but also, to examine how potential contact may influence the son's development.

The “Serbsky State Scientific Center for Social and Forensic Psychiatry” was appointed to provide the expertise. Although none of the parties have been invited by the Center to be interviewed, the experts have notified the court the parties didn't appear and they have returned the material.

In the course of the hearing, the parties submitted another application for forwarding materials to the Center, but it has been rejected as “superfluous”.

As Pasha pointed out, during the whole process she was having the consistent feeling of a biased court.

"The majority of statements of the defendant party – although most of them were false, self-contradictory or lacking basic logic – have been considered true without hearing any evidence. At the same time, all our attempts to disprove them and to give own statements have been overanalyzed and repeatedly challenged with questions, which have had no meaning to the case. I was constantly asked “Which role are you going to play for your child?”, my fatherhood has been doubted (an already long proven fact) on the pretext of my current change of gender. The statement of the opposing party's psychiatrist sounded bizarre and contradicting to the reality, as it says, that “by changing gender, the child's father has been destroyed”. Additionally, only I – not the defendant – had to explain on the question: “How will your child be benefiting from contact with you?”. They are assuming, that contact with me is going to lead to psychological disadvantages.”

Lawyer Illarion Vasiliev is going to appeal.