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The State Department has announced that it is updating procedures to remove medical documentation requirements for transgender Americans who want to update their gender markers on their passports and other documents.
In a statement, Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said the move is part of the Department of State’s commitment to “promoting the freedom, dignity, and equality of all people—including LGBTQI+ persons.”
The department, Blinken added, will also be rolling out additional updates for the passport process. Among them is adding a gender marker “for non-binary, intersex, and gender non-conforming persons applying for a passport or CRBA,” though Blinken noted that making this addition marks a “technologically complex” update that may take some time.
“Today, I am pleased to announce that the Department will be taking further steps toward ensuring the fair treatment of LGBTQI+ U.S. citizens, regardless of their gender or sex, by beginning the process of updating our procedures for the issuance of U.S. Passports and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad (CRBA),” Blinken said Wednesday. “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.”
In a separate statement on Wednesday, the White House said the passport procedure updates are part of the Biden-Harris administration’s efforts of advancing “full equality for transgender Americans.” Previously, in March of this year, the White House marked Transgender Day of Visibility with a proclamation stating the administration was committed to keeping their promise of an “America for all Americans.”