Welcome to New Hampshire road sign | Photo: Wikimedia Commons
A bill proposing the option for an ‘X’ gender marker on New Hampshire licenses and ID cards has been passed into law.
Tell me more
Governor Chris Sununu allowed House Bill 669 to become law earlier this month without his signature. It says that New Hampshire driver’s licenses and non-driver ID cards can have either ‘M,’ ‘F,’ or ‘X’ as gender markers.
New Hampshire joins 12 other states and Washington DC in allowing non-binary residents to choose a third gender option on state-issued ID cards.
‘This victory is life-changing for the many Granite Staters who identify as non-binary. And is another step toward decreasing stigmatization, promoting equality, and ensuring that state identification documents are accurate and affirming,’ said Devon Chaffee, executive director of the ACLU of New Hampshire.
‘Last year, we worked to put comprehensive discrimination protections for transgender people into law. And this year, we’re building on that incredible success,’ Linda Jakows, former campaign manager for Freedom NH, said.
‘The last two years demonstrate the incredible momentum and support in New Hampshire for the trans and gender non-binary community.’
Why it matters
The new law will go into effect on 1 January 2020.
Alex McEntee of Concord, New Hampshire plans to be one of the first people to get their gender marker changed when the law goes into effect.
‘I have long thought the “F” that is currently on my license stands for “fraudulent”. Because it is simply not correct,’ McEntee told the New Hampshire Union Leader. ‘I applaud every legislator who heard my testimony and that of other non-binary Granite Staters. And voted to stand with us in solidarity by supporting HB 669.’
Of course, many conservatives are upset by this new law.
Conservative organization Cornerstone Action argued against the bill earlier this year. They claimed that society ‘can show tolerance and respect for those who identify as a different gender while still maintaining factual data that helps our government identify and solve health and safety threats.’
‘On Governor Sununu’s watch, state-issued IDs have just become declarations of personal feelings,’ stated Shannon McGinley, executive director of Cornerstone Action.
‘That’s no antidote to discrimination. The governor is mistaken to think otherwise.’
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