Washington D.C. has become the first place in the country to allow citizens to identify simply as “X” on official identification documents, rather than as male or female.
The Washington Free Beacon reports that Nik Sakurai was the first person to receive the gender neutral identification on a license. Sakurai made a Facebook event to celebrate the new license.
"I don't feel that sense of gender as something that is part of my core innate experience," Sakurai said. "I'm glad to finally have an ID that actually matches who I am."
Speaking on the change to identification, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said, "Washington, D.C. has long been a leader in LGBTQ rights and gender issues, and this change is the most recent example of our city's commitment to inclusivity.”
Officials also hope that the new identification will protect citizens who don't identify as a specific gender to avoid ridicule by no longer having a license that identifies them as a gender which doesn't seem to match their physical appearance.
Monica Palacio, the director of D.C.’s human rights office, also praised the new identification option: "This important step taken by the Department of Motor Vehicles not only validates a person's chosen identity but also creates broader acceptance, reducing potential incidents of discrimination against individuals for being who they are," Palacio said.
The state of Oregon is set to follow in D.C.’s footsteps and will release gender neutral licenses on Saturday.
Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/Mike Watson Images
Publication date: June 29, 2017