This summer, New York City has joined the growing number of states and cities that are creating a third gender marker for individuals who do not identify as either male or female. The proposed law, which passed the subcommittee on September 9, 2018, would create a third non-binary gender marker—an “X”—for New York City birth certificates.
In addition, the regulation would eliminate the medical note requirement entirely. This eliminates the unnecessary and time-consuming process of getting a doctor’s letter. This means that you would only need to include a notarized affidavit that states your gender identity! The old birth certificate would then be sealed.
On Thursday, September 13, 2018, the proposal moved through the subcommittee and was voted on by the NYC Council. It is expected that Mayor Bill de Blasio will sign it into law, and the change will take effect starting January 1, 2019!
New York City’s proposed law only affects New York City birth certificates and no other forms of ID at this time. This may pose complications for individuals with mismatched IDs. Those concerned about non-binary gender legislation have pointed out that non-binary gender markers will likely not be available for documents issued by the federal government for some time. Additionally, many people believe the government has little to no legitimate reasons for recording and tracking sex or gender. These folks question whether creating a third gender option brings us closer to a world without government-issued gender markers – or whether it further entrenches broken systems.
After consulting with members, clients, and Collective members, SRLP submitted an official comment, pointing out these concerns and offering suggests for improving the proposed regulation. Our official comment can be found here.
If you are interested in correcting your birth certificate or want to stay up-to-date about the status of the proposed regulation, you can follow us on Twitter or Facebook. You can also contact us directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (212) 337-8550, ext. 304 or ext. 308.