April 28, 2009

Transgender Advocacy Group Applauds New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission's Adoption of Updated Gender Declaration Policy

Policy Recognizes that Surgery is Not the Sole Determinant of Gender

NEW YORK - The Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund (TLDEF) applauds the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission's adoption of an updated gender declaration policy.  Under the policy update, a resident wishing to have their license reflect their new gender may submit a “Declaration of Change of Sex Designation” application that attests to their gender identity.

"This common-sense approach will provide New Jersey residents with identification that accurately reflects the gender in which they live," TLDEF executive director Michael Silverman said.  "A lot of discrimination against people who are transgender occurs when they are unable to produce identification that matches who they appear to be," he added.  "In employment, housing and public accommodations, having identification that accurately reflects their gender will go a long way towards minimizing some of the discrimination that people who are transgender experience."

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission adopted the policy in consultation with the Gender Rights Advocacy Association of New Jersey and members of the transgender community. Prior to the policy update, residents could not officially change the gender marker on their licenses until they had completed sex-reassignment surgery.