Republican Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt signed legislation on Tuesday banning “non-binary” state birth certificates.
The Republican-sponsored bill, SB 1100, limits biological sex identification to male or female and prohibits non-binary designation, gender neutral language and any symbol related to non-binary designation. The legislation also bans people from changing the gender on their birth certificates.
“Beginning on the effective date of this act, the biological sex designation on a certificate of birth issued under this section shall be either male or female and shall not be nonbinary or any symbol representing a nonbinary designation including but not limited to the letter ‘X,'” the bill said.
The legislation followed an executive order signed by the governor in November 2021 that ordered the Oklahoma State Department of Health to cease changing or distributing birth certificates with a non-binary option. The order came after the department agreed to allow a non-binary option or change to the certificate in May. (RELATED: Oklahoma Gov. Stitt Orders Halt To Nonbinary Birth Certificates)
‼NEW: @GovStitt signs SB 1100 which bans non-binary gender markers on birth certificates in Oklahoma.
— Dan Snyder (@DanSnyderFOX25) April 26, 2022
The bill passed the state House of Representatives on March 24 and then the Senate on April 21, the bill said. Republican state Oklahoma Sen. Michael Bergstrom authored the bill, and was co-authored by GOP Sens. David Bullard and Jake Merrick.
“People are free to believe whatever they want about their identity, but science has determined people are either biologically male or female at birth,” Republican Oklahoma state Rep. Sheila Dills, the House sponsor of the bill, said. “We want clarity and truth on official state documents. Information should be based on established medical fact and no an ever-changing social dialogue.”
Democratic state lawmakers have overwhelmingly condemned the bill, as state Rep. Mauree Turner called it a “grotesque use of power,” according to the Associated Press.
“I find it a very extreme and grotesque use of power in this body to write this law and try to pass it—when literally none of them live like this,” Turner said.
The Transgender Law Center issued a Wednesday statement called the passage a move done by “a few callous politicians.”
“Sending love to all nonbinary and trans folks in Oklahoma today,” they said. “We see you and love you. The divisive hatred of a few callous politicians will not keep the great majority of us from rallying by your side and coming together wherever they try to separate us from one another.”
The National Center for Transgender Equality found that 15 states currently allow a gender designation outside of male and female, including Vermont when its law goes into effect in July, according to the AP.