First Gender Neutral U.S. Passport Issued

PassportNicole Geri

The State Department has created its first gender-neutral passport, denoted with an "X," as part of the Biden administration's recently declared policy around gender and inclusion.

The revelation was confirmed by the State Department on Wednesday, though the identity of the person who received the passport was not released and the exact process on how to obtain one was not given.

Jessica Stern, the United States' special diplomatic envoy for LGBTQ rights, told the press that the new document choice reflects the "Lived fact" that an increasing number of people identify with a gender identity different than the one given at birth.

"A person lives with greater dignity and respect when they get identity documents that represent their genuine identity," Stern added.

The State Department announced in June that a third gender marker could be available for applicants to choose on their passport as part of an effort to make the document more inclusive of nonbinary, intersex, and gender-nonconforming individuals.

The idea, which would necessitate technology modifications to databases, would be under study and evaluation for a long time, according to a department official, requiring approval from the Office of Management and Budget.

Prior to the department's action, applicants had to show medical documents to establish their biological sex, which would be displayed on the passport, but now they can choose their preferred gender.

"We see this as a method of validating and elevating the human rights of trans and intersex individuals globally, as well as gender nonconforming and nonbinary persons," Stern added.

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