A gender-neutral option was made available on Washington, D.C. driver’s licenses as of Tuesday, making D.C. the first in the nation to offer such and option.
“X,” the new gender neutral identifier, is now featured alongside “M” and “F,” to accommodate D.C. citizens who identify as a “non-binary” gender.
Tuesday marks the first day D.C. residents could obtain a license with this gender marker. D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the addition of the gender-neutral option in a statement published June 23.
“Washington, DC has long been a leader in LGBTQ rights and gender issues, and this change is the most recent example of our city’s commitment to inclusivity,” said Bowser in the statement.
D.C. residents will now be allowed to change the gender marker on their I.D. to whichever they identify as, according to a report from PBS.
People in the district will no longer be required to get signed approval from a health care provider before changing their gender marker from their biological gender. Bowser worked closely with National Center For Transgender Equality to develop the necessary forms and implement procedures to accommodate the new gender self-attestation policy.
A client of Whitman-Walker Health, a health center with a special focus on LGBTQ and HIV care, previously asked if they could get a non-binary gender marker on their I.D., according to Elizabeth Ehret, an Equal Justice Works AmeriCorps Legal Fellow working at Whitman-Walker Health.
“I talked with them and I said, ‘Look, this is not something that’s currently available in D.C. but we can see what we can do,'” Ehret said. Since then, Ehret was involved in discussions with the DMV about the creation of a gender-neutral identification option and how to implement it.
Oregon is the next jurisdiction lined up to offer a gender neutral option in its state issued licenses, with plans to make the option available in July.
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