General News

US issues first gender-neutral passport

Rachel Badham October 28, 2021

The first-ever gender-neutral passport with an X marker has been issued in the US on what has been described as a “momentous day” for non-binary, intersex and gender non-conforming citizens. The passport was issued to Colorado-based intersex navy intersex veteran, Dana Zzyym, who has been fighting for a gender-neutral passport for six years with the assistance of Lambda Legal

Zzyym said they are “ecstatic” that their passport has been altered, adding: “I almost burst into tears when I opened the envelope, pulled out my new passport, and saw the ‘X’ stamped boldly under ‘sex’”. Lambda Legal counsel Paul D. Castillo also celebrated the news, saying: “This is a momentous day and its significance cannot be understated…We couldn’t be more delighted, both for Dana and, as important, for all intersex, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming United States’ passport applicants who will soon have access to the accurate passports they need.”

Dana Zzyym

The US first announced that it would be changing its passport policy in June so that trans and non-binary citizens would be able to change their gender markers without medical consent. In the UK, there is still no option to have an X gender marker on passports, despite a 25-year-long campaign run by non-gendered activist Christie Elan-Cane to introduce a new passport policy. Numerous other countries have a gender-neutral X option on passports, including Argentina, Canada, Iceland, India, Malta, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Uruguay, and now, the US.