‘Intersex’ is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.

Too young to give consent, these babies or small children generally grow up to become adults who do not know the truth about what has happened to their bodies: what human rights organisations term intersex genital mutilation (IGM). The consequences of this treatment can be mental and physical and are long-lasting. Now these activists are calling on government to ban IGM and to allow intersex people to grow up and decide for themselves if they would benefit from medical treatment, reports HEALTH-E NEWS’ Amy Green.

Crystal Hendricks at the National Intersex Engagement in December 2017. (Credit: Lungile Maquba)