Oregon Allows Residents to Choose Non-Binary Gender on Driver's Licenses

17 June, 2017, 05:43 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • Oregon just became first state to allow residents to identify their gender as non-binary on state ID

The commission began considering the change after a state court previous year legally recognized Jamie Shupe's nonbinary gender, making Shupe the first person in the nation to gain this status legally. A survey by the National Center for Transgender Equality, in fact, found that one third of respondents who showed an ID with a name or gender that did not align with their external presentation had experienced verbal harassment, denial of services, and even physical assault. The International Civil Aviation Organization, which develops passport standards, has recommended an "X for unspecified" option since 1996, according to NBC.

The decision, approved by the Oregon Transportation Commission on Thursday, could affect thousands of people. The change is effective July 1 and does not need a doctor's note to take place. About 20,000 people in the state are transgender. "I consider myself as a third sex". The move will make the state the first in the U.S.to legally recognize the identifier, and will be a triumphant step forward for the non-binary and trans community. Just last month, Brown signed a bill into law making it easier and cheaper for Oregonians to revise the gender marker on their birth certificate - filling out a form instead of posting a public notice and going to court. It's for people who don't want to choose male or female.

"[This] can create a lot of barriers going through everyday life", Arli Christian, state policy counsel for the National Center for Transgender Equality, said in a phone call, "We found that almost one-third of transgender people who showed an ID that did not match their gender presentation were verbally harassed, denied benefits or services, asked to leave an establishment or even assaulted".

The new measure has consequently been welcomed by Oregonians who do not conform to traditional gender roles-a diverse group that includes people who also describe themselves as gender-fluid, genderqueer, gender non-conforming, and transgender.

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"It's exciting to see Oregon's Department of Motor Vehicles adopt this change", she said in a press release".

While new to the United States, non-binary gender markers are not new-other cultures and other countries have recognized non-binary genders for many years, including Canada, India, Bangladesh, Australia, New Zealand and Nepal.

In California, the state Senate by a 26-12 vote passed a bill on May 31 to add a third gender option on state IDs, sending it to the state Assembly. "Ideally, my child will grow up in a world and an OR that recognizes and sees them for who they are, no matter how they identity".

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