New York City Lets Residents Now Select the Third Gender on Birth Certificates, Mayor Bill DeBlasio Calls It 'Example of Freedom'
New York Birth certificate, NYC Mayor Bill DeBlasio (Photo Credits: @nycHealthy, Getty Images)

New Yorkers have the option of now selecting a third gender for their newborns. According to a new reform, people of the city can now register as gender non-conforming in which parents can choose X instead of male or female in their baby's birth certificate.

On Wednesday, the New York City Council and Board of Health included a third category 'X' on birth certificates starting from January 1, 2019. The legislation will not require a doctor's note or health care provider's affidavit to change the gender marker. Gender Identity Goes Beyond Male and Female: 33 Gender Terms and Their Meanings That You Probably Didn’t Know Of!

While signing the bill that added the third gender option to birth certificates, New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio on Tuesday called the law "an essential example of freedom." He said, "If you're denied the right to express yourself, you don't have freedom. If you have to sit by the door of a classroom worried that someone is going to typify you the wrong way and deny your identity, you don't have freedom. You don’t feel free."

The Democrat also said, "Transgender and gender non-conforming New Yorkers deserve the right to choose how they identify and to live with respect and dignity. This bold new policy advances the fight for equality and makes our City fairer for all people." Scotland Becomes 1st Country in The World to Embed LGBTQ Inclusive Education in School Curriculum.

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The Health Department said that since 2014, when the city made it easier for transgender residents of New York to amend their birth certificate, over 1,000 birth certificates were amended; however there were only 20 amendments per year in the previous four years.

Explaining the addition in the bill, The Health Department was quoted as saying, "People born in New York City can submit a notarized affidavit that attests the gender marker change is to affirm their gender identity. A sample affidavit is available online. Although sex assigned at birth is required on birth certificates, the Health Department recognizes that some people’s assigned sex may not be consistent with their gender identity. The Department already allows New Yorkers to amend the gender on their birth certificate without surgery or a name change."