On July 1, Oregon became the first U.S.
state to begin issuing gender neutral identification cards.
Oregon residents who do not identify as
male or female are given the option to choose neither on their
driver's licenses, learner's permits and state IDs. Such persons can
choose “X” instead of M or F on their cards, the
In a statement given to ELLE.com,
Transgender Law Center Executive Director Kris Hayashi praised the
“Everyone needs access to an ID that
accurately reflects who they are,” Hayashi
said. “The simple measures moving forward in Oregon, D.C., and
California make daily life for many transgender and gender nonbinary
people infinitely safer and easier.”
Mara Keisling, executive director of
the National Center for Transgender Equality, echoed the sentiment.
“We are thrilled to see Oregon
leading the way in advancing identity document policies which allow
for transgender people, including those who are non-binary, to have
an accurate ID that helps them function in their day to day lives,”
said Keisling in a statement. “This is a tremendous first step,
which acknowledges the experiences and humanity of a growing segment
of the population. NCTE congratulates Oregon and looks forward to
other jurisdictions passing similar measures in the months ahead.”
The change comes roughly a year after a
Multnomah County Circuit judge allowed Portland Army veteran Jamie
Shupe to legally identify as non-binary. The ruling is believed to
be the first of its kind in the United States.