The US is officially adding a third gender option on passports

2 July 2021, 15:39

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By Sam Prance

You can also now select your gender on an American passport without medical documentation.

The United States is officially making updates to the gender options on their passports to make them more gender-inclusive.

Until now, US passports have only included two gender options, male and female. It has also been necessary for US citizens to provide medical documentation to prove what gender they are. These measures have been widely criticised by LGBTQI+ people, given that it often takes years for trans people to get medical documents that accurately reflect their genders.

This week (Jun 30), the State Department revealed that they're in the process of adding a third gender option to passports.

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The US is officially adding a third gender option on passports
The US is officially adding a third gender option on passports. Picture: Jeff Mccollough / EyeEm, A. Martin UW Photography

In a new statement, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, announced: "Most immediately, we will be updating our procedures to allow applicants to self-select their gender as “M” or “F” and will no longer require medical certification if an applicant’s self-selected gender does not match the gender on their other citizenship or identity documents."

Blinken then explained: "The Department has begun moving towards adding a gender marker for non-binary, intersex, and gender non-conforming persons applying for a passport or CRBA. We are evaluating the best approach to achieve this goal. The process of adding a gender marker for non-binary, intersex, and gender non-conforming persons to these documents is technologically complex and will take time for extensive systems updates."

Blinken ended the statement by writing: "We also value our continued engagement with the LGBTQI+ community, which will inform our approach and positions moving forward. With this action, I express our enduring commitment to the LGBTQI+ community today and moving forward."