Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences (LEU) asked a transgender person, who has recently changed her legal documents, to submit a declaration stating that she has lost her diploma. According to LEU, this is the sole way to receive a duplicate diploma. Since cases like this are not regulated, transgender people can find themselves in absurd situations.
“Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences asks a transgender person to submit a declaration stating that she has lost her diploma, since, according to the University, this is the only way to receive a duplicate. In this case, one could easily ask why this requirement is even necessary if the person in question did not lose the diploma nor is it damaged in any way. However, the University’s reply is that since this was the first case of its kind, LEU has no other regulation.
According to the order of the Minister of Education and Science, duplicate diplomas are issued only in case of loss or damage. Nonetheless, the Ministry admits that the regulation “needs improvement”, announced Tomas Vytautas Raskevičius, representative of the National LGBT* rights organization LGL.
T. V. Raskevičius explained the case in more detail to Lithuanian news portal 15min. He told the news website that LEU asked a transgender person, who after changing her legal documents would also like to change her university diploma, to submit a declaration stating that her current diploma is no longer valid. “I asked them why anyone had to inform “society” about their old diploma if nothing has happened to it. The only thing that has changed is the person’s identity information. LEU was unable to answer this question”, commented LGL’s representative.
After this incident, T. V. Raskevičius contacted the Ministry of Education and Science. Its spokesperson, however, affirmed that the Ministry of Education and Science had no regulation regarding such cases: “It was agreed to issue a duplicate, therefore the University follows its internal rules, which require students to submit a statement asking for a duplicate.”
Nevertheless, T. V. Raskevičius remains sceptical since in such cases transgender people are deemed responsible due a lack of regulation. Initially, the University decided to insert the court order number, according to which the person’s gender had been changed, on the duplicate. However, T. V. Raskevičius managed to reach an agreement with the Ministry of Education and Science so that this information would not be shown on the diploma. According to its spokesperson, the declaration about the alleged loss of the diploma was submitted by transgender person in question.