The U.S. State Department issued the first passport with an X-gender marker for sexually minorities who do not choose to identify as male nor female.
U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement that the first “X-gender” U.S. passport was issued, adding that all applicants will have access to this new type of passport once a related system is upgraded earlier next year.
Passport applicants are allowed by the U.S. state department to define a gender of their choice without having to verify it based on personal medical records. The current system requires submission of certificates verified by medical institutes if you want to choose a different gender from the one reported at the time of birth registration.
U.S. Special Envoy to Advance the Human Rights of LGBTQI+ Persons Jessica Stern defined that the measure is to recognize in government documents that there is a wider range of sexual characteristics than the two designations, adding that people can live based on true respect when they are given a certificate that reflects their real identity.
It was not reported by the department for whom this X-gender marked passport was issued but intersex activist Dana Zzyym in Port Colins, Colorado, said in a telephone interview that the X-gender passport was given to Zzyym according to The Associated Press reports.
The U.S. state department in June announced guidelines to revise the passport issuance process for sexual minorities. It took four months from then to get the first new passport issued due to lead time in changing computer system settings. The “X-gender” passport awaits final approval of the Office of Management and Budget. At least 11 countries – Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, Nepal, etc. - allowed for “X-gender” in passports before the United States did, according to the AFP.