California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill Monday recognizing a third gender, becoming one of the first states to do so.
The bill allows for people to identify as nonbinary on state issued documents like driver's licenses and birth certificates, according to Out Magazine. It will also make it easier for people to make gender changes, which previously required for a person to be post-operation and get a doctor’s statement.
“I want to thank Gov. Brown for recognizing how difficult it can be for our transgender, nonbinary, and intersex family members, friends, and neighbors when they don’t have an ID that matches their gender presentation,” bill co-sponsor and San Diego Senator Toni Atkins said to Out. “The Gender Recognition Act will eliminate unnecessary stress and anxiety for many Californians, and it exemplifies the leadership role that our state continues to take in LGBTQ civil rights.”
Those who ask can also have their birth certificate reissued with non-binary status. According to The Hill, Brown signed the measure on the last day possible to enact potential bills from the past year’s legislative session.
Previously, New York City issued the second ever non-binary birth certificate at the end of 2016. Washington DC’s DMV also started issuing non-binary marks for driver’s licences in June 2017, while Oregon also began issuing licences with the third gender around the same time.