Colorado residents will no longer be limited to identifying as a man or a woman on their driver’s license.
“I think it’s great. I think there’s way too much turmoil between people and judgement and everything,” said Colorado Springs resident Megan Wilson, as she was leaving the DMV.
“I think people just need to do what they want to do. If they want to put an “X” there and they don’t think that they’re with either gender and are gender fluid, then I think that’s totally cool,” Wilson added.
Under “Sex” on the driver’s license, people will have a 3rd option to choose: “X,” which is non-binary.
They’ll have to bring in a change of sex designation form, as well as a signature from their licensed treating medical or behavioral healthcare provider.
The Colorado Department of Revenue says they’re adopting these emergency rules to preserve public health, safety, and welfare–saying the rules are consistent with recent federal and state court actions.
“I’m a lawyer. So legally, I think it’s appropriate to do that. I think the constitution protects people–whether they recognize themselves as male, female, or transgender, or no gender. I think that’s permitted. Personally, I think there’s gender that’s defined by God. So you were born male or female.”
“I feel that God made Adam and Eve the way that it is. I would like it to remain male and female,” Mark Anthony Barrionuevo told News5.
“However, as a lawyer, I also know the legal ramifications. The government cannot force people to denote who they are as a gender. So I will respect that–even though, personally, I feel different about it,” he added.
Barrionuevo says his ID used to list him as a female, because of an error made at the DMV.
“So I was noted as a female for about 4 or 5 years until I tried to change it and they finally let me do that.”
But in that time, Barrionuevo says he didn’t run into any issues.
“I guess that’s the good thing about being in the 21st century. No one ever looked at that and said, ‘it says you’re a female, so you can’t do x, y, and z.”
Law enforcement doesn’t expect it to affect them either when it comes to trying to identify or search for a suspect.
“We don’t rely on just one piece of information,” said Natalie Sosa, with the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office.
“There’s also height and weight, or a picture. And there are sometimes where someone doesn’t have a driver’s license and you have to find other ways to identify them,” she added. “I think it would almost be the same as–sometimes we don’t know someone’s race. So we might not know the race of the person and say ‘unknown race.’ If we don’t know if it’s female or male, we’ll say ‘unknown suspect’–height, weight, and wearing this.”
Four other states, as well as Washington D.C., are already doing this.
“I think it positively impacts our community,” said Springs Equality President Flora Vincent.
“And I think for the small handful of people that this does affect, it means the world to them. And I think that’s what’s important. Those are the people who are in our community who this affects them personally. This could change their life.”
The new rules go into effect November 30th.
For more information on the process to have the non-binary designation on a license and how Colorado has gone through this process, click here.