(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Bowser announced that starting June 27, 2017, “X,” the gender neutral identifier, will be added to driver licenses and identification cards issued by the District of Columbia Department of Motor Vehicles (DC DMV). Currently, applicants must choose between male and female as a gender identifier. The new designation and modified gender designation process aligns District gender identity policies with DC Values and recognizes the significance of gender non-binary persons to self-certify their gender preference.
“Washington, DC has long been a leader in LGBTQ rights and gender issues, and this change is the most recent example of our city’s commitment to inclusivity,” said Mayor Bowser. “The safety and well-being of all Washingtonians is my top priority, and whenever we are presented with an opportunity to improve the lives of residents and better align our policies with DC values, I will take it. I hope to see other jurisdictions follow in our footsteps.”
DC DMV worked closely with the National Center for Transgender Equality to develop form modifications, processes, and the implementation of self-certification gender designation. While any resident seeking a DMV-issued credential can request the gender neutral identifier, the new option is anticipated to immediately benefit the transgender community.
“The new gender neutral identifier offers gender non-binary District residents a gender designation that affirms who they are,” said Director of the Mayor’s Office of LGBTQ Affairs Sheila Alexander-Reid. “The implementation of a gender neutral identifier is consistent with our DC values of inclusion and respect.”
“As a city, we proudly and consistently remain at the forefront of inclusion and acceptance of our transgender and gender non-binary communities,” said Director of the Office of Human Rights Monica Palacio. “This important step taken by the Department of Motor Vehicles not only validates a person’s chosen identity but also creates broader acceptance, reducing potential incidents of discrimination against individuals for being who they are.”
“This is a truly cutting-edge development,” said Director of Legal Services at Whitman-Walker Health Amy Nelson. “We are thrilled that the District of Columbia is the first jurisdiction in the Nation to issue gender-neutral driver’s licenses and IDs. Whitman-Walker Legal Services was honored to work on this major step forward with the District Government and the National Center for Transgender Equality.”
DC is the first jurisdiction in the country to add the gender neutral identifier to its credentials with the State of Oregon slated to also offer the gender neutral identifier in early July. District-issued credentials with the gender neutral identifier will be produced on the newly released Cherry Blossom design listing the jurisdictional name as Washington, DC. The introduction of the gender neutral identifier does not amend the process to obtain a REAL ID or Limited Purpose credential. Additional information on these services is available at dmv.dc.gov.