People wanting to correct their gender identity on official B.C. identification documents will no longer need a doctor or psychologist’s validation to make the change.
Grace Lore, B.C.’s parliamentary secretary for gender equity, made the announcement on Friday, (Jan. 14). Lore said the change was made to build on the province’s work to remove the requirement for gender-affirming surgery before an individual can change the gender on their birth certificate.
B.C. also introduced an X gender marker for driver’s licenses, service cards and birth certificates back in Nov. 2018.
“A person knows their gender identity best, not a doctor or a psychologist,” Lore said. “We need to hear from people about who they are and that’s all the confirmation we need as government to treat people with respect and dignity,”
Applicants must submit a form requesting a change to their gender designation on their birth certificate. The form must be completed and sent along with any previously issued birth certificates and a fee of $27.
Applicants under 19 years of age must provide proof of parentage or legal guardianship on their applications.
Adrienne Smith, litigation director for the Catherine White Holman Wellness Centre All Genders Legal Clinic, said the change was a welcome announcement for the trans community.
“The process to have your ID reflect your rights has been quite complicated. This change is going to make it easier for us to display an M, an F, or an X that matches who we really are. This change removes a barrier and it shows the government has been licensing to our community. It also frees up important healthcare resources by moving physicians away from filling out forms and into providing healthcare.”
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