The United States Government has introduced a new policy regarding gender markers on US passports.
The US State Department has made it easier for transgender Americans to travel overseas by removing a previous requirement that they have undergone sex reassignment surgery before changing their gender designation on passports.
Under the new policy, transgender people will only have to prove that they have undergone “appropriate medical treatment for gender transition”. People will need to meet criteria which are based on recommendations from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health.
The new policy will also cover Consular Reports of Birth Abroad, which are birth certificates issued to the foreign-born children of US citizens.
People who are part of the way through an ongoing process of gender transition will be able to receive two-year limited validity passports which reflect that status.
The policy also requires State Department staff to refer to transgender people by their nominated gender identity.
US trans groups, including the Transgender Law Centre, have applauded the measure.