The Canadian government has announced it will implement an ‘X’ gender designation in Canadian passports, as well as other immigration documents. to support LGBTQ2 rights and advance the Government’s agenda on gender equality, diversity and inclusion.
An ‘X’ will make it easier for people who do not identify as female or male to acquire passports and other government-issued documents that better reflect their gender identity.
As of 31st August, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will become Canada’s first Government department to introduce interim measures, which include allowing individuals to add an observation to their passport stating their sex should be identified as ‘X. Interim measures will be available until IRCC is able to print documents with an “X.”
“All Canadians should feel safe to be themselves, live according to their gender identity and express their gender as they choose,” said Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship. “By introducing an ‘X’ gender designation in our government-issued documents, we are taking an important step towards advancing equality for all Canadians regardless of gender identity or expression.”
The announcement follows steps to protect Canadians in their right to the gender identity of their choice, and freedom of gender expression. Earlier this summer, Bill C-16 amended the Canadian Human Rights Act and added gender identity and gender expression to the list of prohibited grounds of discrimination.
In the coming months, the Government of Canada will continue this important work in developing a consistent federal approach to how its programs and services collect, use and display sex and gender information so Canadians can have their gender more accurately reflected in government documents while also protecting their privacy.
Article published 29th August 2017