Photo Credit: Tim Bieler
United States Passports Will Soon Offer Third Gender Option For Queer Individuals
The U.S. State Department approved the action to allow for a third gender option on American passports. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is pushing for the equal travel passport treatment of LGBTQI+ U.S. citizens by allowing gender-queer individuals to have a non-binary selection.
This will allow for a gender marker for this demographic of gender non-conforming people on U.S. passports, even though the marker hasn’t been established yet. Any person can apply for a U.S. passport by selecting “M” or “F” when applying in the gender section, but there will be no verification of gender.
Blinken re-enforces that the gender marker is being determined because it will have to be established in the new passport system, which will need to be fully updated. Right now, there isn’t a third gender option available for non-binary individuals. Through shifting the procedures within the system of issuing U.S. passports to citizens and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad (CRBA) will open up the world for more LGBTQI+ to feel more inclined to travel globally.
Also, the Biden administration is being pushed by the American Civil Liberties Union to create more clarified transgender, non-binary, and intersex federal IDs. Some IDs don’t have any identification for intersex people, and there are a very small percentage of them that are born in the United States who don’t identify as “M” or “F”. For intersex people, “X” has become the most identified term in other countries like India, New Zealand, Australia, Nepal, and Canada.
This has been a long battle for non-binary individuals, so they don’t have to identify with a gender that isn’t theirs, which prevents many LGBTQI+ citizens from traveling because of this fear. Retired navy soldier, Dana Zzyym sued the Colorado Passport Agency for not allowing them to have another option for non-binary identification. They enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1978 and wasn’t able to claim an accurate U.S. passport. Their activism paired with the legacy of other strong LGBTQI+ activists has helped pushed these federal legislative alterations in action.