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N.J. senate approves transgender birth certificate bill

Monday, December 23, 2013
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TRENTON, N.J. — The New Jersey state Senate has approved a bill that would require the state Health Department to issue a new birth certificate for people who have completed the clinical process of altering their gender.

N.J. state capitol in Trenton.

N.J. state capitol in Trenton.

The Senate voted 21-11 to approve the bill, which has already passed the Assembly and now heads to Republican Gov. Chris Christie’s desk, reports the New Jersey Star-Ledger.

Since 1984, New Jersey law has directed that the state Health Department issue a new birth certificate only to those who have undergone gender reassignment surgery.

But since not every transgender person undergoes surgery, state Sen. Joseph Vitale (D-Middlesex, N.J.), chairman of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee, sponsored the bill to allow for new birth certificates for those who opt only for hormone replacement therapy, supporters of the bill said.

“It’s their choice. It’s their certificate. And at the end of the day, it’s their right to do this,” said Vitale.

The bill would require a new birth record for people who have undergone “clinically appropriate treatment for the purpose of gender transition, based on contemporary medical standards, or that the person has an intersex condition.”

A licensed health care provider would be required to certify that treatment had taken place, according to the bill.

The state Assembly passed the bill by a 43-27 vote in June.

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