I've documented in these electronic pages the seven year long battle of girl like us Joanne Cassar to have her right to marry recognized by a Maltese government that fought her every step of the way.
It was a fight that eventually ended up in the European Court of Human Rights, became an election issue in the March 2013 Maltese national elections and with the change of government ended in her favor.
The new Labour government as part of the ECHR case settlement with Cassar introduced legislative changes in Maltese law that recognizes the full human rights of a trans person in the gender they transition to, including the right to marry.
December 13 was Republic Day in Malta, the day in 1974 that substantial constitutional changes occurred that transformed the former British colony to an independent nation. On that day Maltese citizens are given Republic Day Honours for their contributions to Maltese society, and this year's group of Gieh ir Repubblika recipients includes Joanne Cassar.
Joanne Cassar was honored for her perseverance since 2006 in this marriage fight, which resulted in not only a personal victory for her, but in the process made Malta a fairer society.
Congratulations Joanne on this well deserved honor and your battle that not only was a victory for you and other Maltese trans people, but will possibly have an impact on the rest of the world when it comes to trans marriage rights cases