US State Department: Policies Changes on Gender on Passports

Proposing Changes to the Department’s Policies on Gender on U.S. Passports and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad

Washington, DC (STL.News) Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken released the following statement:

The Department of State is committed to promoting the freedom, dignity, and equality of all people – including LGBTQI+ persons.  Since assuming office, President Biden has taken several executive actions demonstrating this administration’s commitment to human rights and has directed agencies across the U.S. government to take concrete actions to promote and protect the human rights of LGBTQI+ persons around the world.  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).

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.  The Department has begun moving towards adding a gender marker for non-binary, intersex, and gender non-conforming persons applying for a passport or CRBA.  We are evaluating the best approach to achieve this goal.  The process of adding a gender marker for non-binary, intersex, and gender non-conforming persons to these documents is technologically complex and will take time for extensive systems updates.  The Department will also be working closely with its interagency partners to ensure as smooth a travel experience as possible for the passport holder.  As we work towards this longer-term goal of making available a gender marker for non-binary, intersex, and gender non-conforming persons seeking a passport or CRBA, the Department will provide updates on the process and any interim solutions via our website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/need-passport/selecting-your-gender-marker.html.

In line with the Administration’s commitment to re-engage with allies and partners, the Department is taking these steps after considerable consultation with like-minded governments who have undertaken similar changes.  We also value our continued engagement with the LGBTQI+ community, which will inform our approach and positions moving forward.  With this action, I express our enduring commitment to the LGBTQI+ community today and moving forward.

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