Wednesday, October 17, 2018


There are sometimes when good news flies under the radar and we don’t hear about it until it is done, in this case being able to put an “X” for your gender on your driver license.
Arkansas — Yes, Arkansas — Quietly Begins Issuing Gender-Neutral IDs to Non-Binary People
By: Kate Sosin and Nico Lang
October 16, 2018

An unlikely state has joined the wave of municipalities recognizing the identities of trans, non-binary, and intersex people: Arkansas.

At least two transgender people have been issued gender-neutral ID cards since the beginning of October. When Zach Miller saw that a friend, long-time trans organizer Beck Witt, successfully updated their state identification with an “X” marker on Oct. 8, Miller went down to the local DMV in Little Rock to do the same.

While the DMV representative was initially confused by the request, Miller described her as “receptive.”

“Hey, you learn new things every day,” the representative reportedly said when informed that Miller identifies as neither gender. In conversation with INTO, the nonbinary activist identified as “gendervoid” and requested that this story use neither male nor female pronouns when referring to Miller.
It was fantastic that they were able to do that but what is even more surprising was…
According to spokesperson Scott Hardin, that policy has been on the books for eight years. It was quietly rolled out in December 2010, when former Assistant Commissioner of Operations and Administration Mike Munns announced the change in an internal email shared with INTO.

“Our official policy is to allow a licensee to change their gender as requested, no questions asked, no documentation required,” he told staff. “Please see that this policy is followed.”
The change was implemented, however, without a formal announcement. The state of Arkansas has historically operated without a clear public policy as to changing gender markers on driver’s licenses and IDs.
Yeah, it has been on the books for eight years, but why the secrecy?

Having an ID that doesn’t have you true gender can be dangerous,
Miller remembered being pulled over a few years ago with a headlight out and presenting a female ID card.

“The police officer wasn’t especially aggressive, but then when I showed him my ID, he had a second officer come up,” Miller recalled. “He had his hand on his weapon. They accused me of having a fake ID. Then even when I told them that I was transgender, they became more aggressive. I was very concerned for my safety.”
But I have to wonder if having an “X” on your ID will create any problems, I hope that law officers will know what an “X” on your ID means.

1 comment:

  1. "N/A" may be more accurate than an "X" but I still see no need for a gender marker at all.