New York residents will now have the option to choose "X" as their gender marker on their state-issued IDs, Governor Kathy Hochul announced Friday.
The change applies to driver's licenses, learner permits and non-driver IDs. The new policy was rolled out just days before the start of Pride Month and is part of New York's Gender Recognition Act, which will go into effect on June 24.
"Every person, regardless of their gender identity or expression, deserves to have an identity document that reflects who they are," New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said. "My administration remains committed to ensuring that New York is a place of value, love and belonging for members of the LGBTQ+ community."
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New Yorkers: You can now choose “X” as a gender marker on your driver license. Every person deserves to have an identity document that reflects who they are. This is a historic change in our fight to make New York a more inclusive and just state for all. pic.twitter.com/hogp3Uj1I2
— Governor Kathy Hochul (@GovKathyHochul) May 27, 2022
New York residents who already have a state-issued ID will have the option to change their gender marker from "M" or "F" to "X" at the DMV. Those applying for a state-issued ID for the first time will also have the option to select "X."
An online application to request the change will be available beginning in July, Hochul said.
Carl Charles, a senior attorney at Lambda Legal, which focuses on LGBT rights and filed a lawsuit seeking the "X" marker on behalf of a nonbinary, transgender client, called the move a "significant step forward" for equality.
"The State of New York has finally turned the page on a discriminatory, outdated policy," Charles said. "Nonbinary, transgender, and gender non-conforming New Yorkers now have access to accurate, state-issued identity documents that are critical to day to day life in New York."
New York joins several other states, including California, New Jersey and Maine, in allowing residents to choose something other than male or female as their gender marker on certain state-issued documents. The State Department and Social Security Administration this year also announced they will allow people to select "X" as their gender identity on U.S. Passports and Social Security documents.