Friday, April 6, 2018

Puerto Rico Steps Up!

From the Metro Weekly, DC, USA

"Court orders Puerto Rico to issue accurate birth certificates to transgender residents

Crder comes in response to a first-of-its-kind federal lawsuit

By John Riley on April 4, 2018 

A federal court has struck down a policy that prohibits transgender people born in Puerto Rico from amending the gender marker on their birth certificates. The court also issued an order requiring officials to allow those corrections.

The order comes in response to a first-of-its-kind federal lawsuit brought against the commonwealth challenging its categorical ban prohibiting people from correcting gender markers on birth certificates, even in the face of evidence that a person has undergone a gender transition.

“This is a tremendous victory for our clients and all transgender people born in Puerto Rico,” Omar Gonzalez-Pagan, a staff attorney for Lambda Legal, said in a statement. “The Puerto Rican government must now allow transgender Puerto Ricans to change the gender markers on their birth certificates so that they accurately reflect and affirm their identities.

“The Commonwealth’s categorical ban was not only discriminatory; it also was a relic from the past reflecting archaic views about who we are as a people and a society,” Gonzalez-Pagan added. “A birth certificate is an essential identity document. It is vital for identity documents to accurately reflect who we are. We are pleased that the court recognized that the government cannot interfere with transgender people’s ability to live as their authentic selves and that attempts to do so are unconstitutional.”

Maybe Ohio will be next!