First ever gender neutral passports are issued in the US
Big changes are happening.
The United States is making huge progress when it comes to inclusivity and gender equality and has introduced its first gender-neutral passport.
The new documents will allow people to identify with an "X" for their gender.
The Department of State is set to offer new options for gender-nonconforming, intersex and non-binary individuals in 2022.
"I want to reiterate, on the occasion of this passport issuance, the Department of State’s commitment to promoting the freedom, dignity, and equality of all people – including LGBTQI+ persons," State Department spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement.
With the very first of these passports being issued already, the person who received it has not been identified.
Refusing to reveal if it was for Dana Zzyym, an intersex Colorado resident who uses they/them pronouns, a department spokesperson said that the government won't reveal that information based on privacy reasons.
This isn't the first step the US has taken when it comes to creating a more inclusive country, with 18 out of 50 states allowing residents to mark their gender as ‘X’ on their driving licence.
The news this option was being added to passports was announced in June and was originally said it could take longer than expected to update and modify the system.
According to a department official, the application and system update to obtain the "X" option still needs to be approved by the
Office of Management and Budget, who review all US government documents before they are issued.
Countries like New Zealand, Australia, Canada and Nepal have all made this change to their passport systems, allowing people to choose their own gender identity.