UK Home Office Considering Gender Neutral Passports

I’m late to this one, but in the wake of Australia changing its policies, the UK Home Office announced on September 19 it was considering following the lead of Australia and not displaying gender on UK passports.   

While transpeople in the UK can get passports with the correct gender markers, intersex people who may not identify with either gender are forced to choose either ‘M’ or ‘F’.   The Home Office in those cases would allow for an ‘X’ to be placed in the gender marker field or eliminating it altogether.  

A UK Home Office spokesperson stated: “We are exploring with international
partners and relevant stakeholders the security implications of gender
not being displayed on the passport”.

Mismatched gender codes are a major hassle for transpeople who travel internationally.  Those mismatched gender codes have led to transpeople being hassled when transiting customs in various countries, denied entry into nations or being subjected to embarrassing and humiliating situations while doing so.

The US State Department implemented rule changes last year that allow for transpeople to get passports without requiring genital surgery.  Australia recently announced in September they would no longerrequire genital surgery in oder to issue new passports and would issue them to sex and gender diverse applicants in either 
M (male), F (female) or X (indeterminate/unspecified/intersex).

The proposed passport policy change would not require legislative action since passports are considered under royal prerogative and would require only a simple ministerial order to implement.

Will keep an eye on it and see if that happens.

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