Cassandra Keenan

Nevada DMV debuts new form to change gender marker

Filed By Cassandra Keenan | May 23, 2010 5:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics, Transgender & Intersex
Tags: drivers license, gender, Las Vegas, Nevada, SRS

Transgender Nevadans had reason to celebrate recently as the state's motor vehicles department decided to no longer require documentation of genital reconstructive surgery in order to switch applicants' gender marker on their driver's licenses. Local activists hailed it as a significant first step in stemming trans discrimination in the Silver State.

The new procedure, announced Friday in a joint press release from the ACLU of Nevada and the nonprofit group Equality Nevada, involves a form that must be filled out by a licensed physician and then submitted by the applicant to the DMV for processing. The form asks the doctor to check "male" or "female" for the following questions:

  • Living full-time as identified gender and undergoing treatment as...
  • Gender identification is...

Equality Nevada officials said they hoped the DMV decision added momentum to their efforts to win basic legal protections for trans Nevadans at the state level, including for employment, public accommodations and housing.

"While legislation was introduced in the 2009 legislative session which would have ended employment discrimination against transgender persons, the bill (AB184) died in an Assembly committee," the press release stated. "Efforts to introduce similar legislation in the 2011 Legislature are under way. Working with the Nevada DMV to change the procedure for changing the gender marker on driver licenses was one part of these efforts."

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Wow. It's inconceivable to me that such a small step was unavailable until this reform was made. Congratulations.

It's cool because not all trans people opt to have surgery. Although many people seem to believe that surgery marks the completion of a trans person's transition, which is a total misconception.

I'm familiar. But even if it was the case that all trans people did have surgery, it would still be unacceptable to demand that people wait until after surgery to change the gender marker on their driver's license. It's unfair and dangerous to walk around with ID that doesn't match you. And given that you have to live full time (in your true gender) before you're even permitted to have surgery, not to mention the time it takes to save up for it, that old policy placed an untenable burden on this community.

Jamie Shiner | May 24, 2010 8:07 AM

Most important, Most Transsexual people who have not had the reassignment surgery, have not done this simply due to the costs. The costs of this surgery have skyrocketed in the past few years any many just can't afford it. Jamie

Great! Although it's still weird that one needs a note from their doctor to tell others what their gender is.