District of Columbia

D.C. mayor OKs bill easing rules for transgender people to obtain new birth certificates


WASHINGTON — District of Columbia mayor Vincent Gray on Tuesday signed a bill that would make it easier for transgender people to obtain new birth certificates reflecting their change in gender identity.

The ground breaking bill, the JaParker Deoni Jones Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act of 2013 — named for Deoni Jones, a transgender woman who was murdered in D.C. in February 2012 — is being heralded as the “country’s most liberal policy” for updating birth certificates.

The measure, approved July 10 by unanimous vote of the 13-member D.C. Council, would ease restrictions on gender identity changes by requiring only a certified statement from a medical doctor.

Previously, a change would have required public notification in classified newspaper advertisement and surgical requirements.

The new law would allow for the issuance of a new birth certificate rather than simply amending the original.

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Transgender activists say amended birth certificates often lead to challenges and subject them to discrimination and invasion of privacy.

Because of the District’s home rule charter, the bill remains subject to a congressional review of 30 legislative days before it becomes law.

One source told LGBTQ Nation the legislative review most likely would not be completed until November due to the current congressional recesses.

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