The United States affiliate of the Organization Intersex International (OII)

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Category Archives: Human Rights

More Americans Receive Non-binary Gender Recognition!

More Americans Receive Non-binary Gender Recognition!

“I hope that more people will feel empowered to challenge the norms, to see that our sexual anatomy is on a spectrum and that gender is really socially constructed.” — David Cameron Strachan

As reported by NBC News on Wednesday, February 15th, three more Californians –David Strachan, 69, Char Crawford, 32, and Xin Farrish, 34– received legal gender recognition as non-binary this week, raising the total number of non-binary Californians to seven!

We’re very excited about this, but first, in case you’re unfamiliar with the term non-binary, it refers to people whose gender identity isn’t “man” or “woman” but instead, both or neither. It’s also become an umbrella term to encompass all the different non-binary gender identities, such as “genderqueer” (the original Western term for this identity), “two-spirit” (from indigenous American culture), and “gender fluid”–which refers to people whose gender identity shifts over time, as long expressed by our E.D. and more recently by celebrities Ruby Rose, Miley Cyrus and Jaden Smith.

While intersex people have all gender identities, for those of us whose gender identities match our non-binary bodies, this legal gender recognition is a huge victory and an affirmation of who we are. Indeed, the very reason that the practice of “normalizing” intersex infant genital surgeries, aka Intersex Genital Mutilation (IGM) exists is because of the notion that all humans must be men or women, so having the government acknowledge that humans are indeed not all men or women is an enormous step towards ending interphobia (negative attitudes about intersex people and traits) and its human rights violating offshoot, IGM.

As an organization devoted to working in solidarity with our fellow LGBTQIA community members, we’ve very happy to see the solidarity and coalition at play in this week’s developments, where the non-binary gender recognition recipients are both intersex and non-intersex. We also note that while intersex people have often been left out of conversations about the non-binary community and non-binary gender identity, we’ve played a pioneering role in non-binary identity development and recognition.

For example, our founding E.D. Hida Viloria spoke about having a non-binary gender identity in 1999‘s groundbreaking documentary Gendernauts. Later, our associate director Dana Zzyym, with Lambda Legal’s representation, filed a groundbreaking federal lawsuit for non-binary gender recognition on their passport on Intersex Awareness Day (Oct. 26th) 2015. As stated in last November’s victorious ruling in the lawsuit, the court found “no evidence that the Department followed a rational decision-making process in deciding to implement its binary-only gender passport policy.” Similarly, Sara Kelly Keenan, who became the second non-binary U.S. citizen last September (the first, in June, was Jamie Shupe of Oregon), and the first non-binary Californian, is intersex.

David Cameron Strachan, one of this week’s recipients, is also intersex,and has been recognized for his long-term activism. Strachan was the spearheading force behind the first government hearing on intersex human rights in history (in San Francisco in 2004, at which our E.D. provided testimony), and subsequent report on intersex human rights by the San Francisco Human Rights Commission.

To date, nine Americans have had their non-binary gender legally recognized (in addition to Shupe, Keenan, Zzyym, and the three non-binary folks this week, there are three more Californians: Cameron Wu, Rain Emery Chamberlain, and A.T. Fury), and we congratulate them all for bravely standing up to be recognized as who they are! We note that access to non-binary gender recognition is one of intersex human rights advocates’ demands, and we encourage non-binary people, allies and others not to forget that intersex people can be non-binary too, and to include us in your conversations and advocacy work. :)

#intersex #non-binary #genderqueer #genderrecognition #LGBTI #LGBT

http://www.nbcnews.com/feature/nbc-out/court-ruling-raises-number-legally-nonbinary-californians-seven-n721676

Global Intersex Activists & The Guardian on Intersex Birth Certificates

Global Intersex Activists & The Guardian on Intersex Birth Certificates

Bravo to Sara Kelly Keenan and to The Guardian for this respectfully written and well researched article, featuring fantastic interviews with Keenan–the first U.S. citizen to be issued an “intersex” birth certificate (from New York City)–her husband, and others. We have long spoken about the fact that in order for nonconsensual surgeries, aka Intersex Genital… Continue Reading

E.D. Hida Viloria quoted in People Magazine

E.D. Hida Viloria quoted in People Magazine

Today, People Magazine quotes our founding director Hida Viloria about the recent historic development in NYC! Last week we shared the great news that NYC had issued a groundbreaking intersex birth certificate—to the fantastic Sara Kelly Keenan, who is also the first non-binary Californian— and we are grateful for all the media coverage which has… Continue Reading

Yr End Report: Celebrating Intersex Education & Legal Recognition in 2016!

Yr End Report: Celebrating Intersex Education & Legal Recognition in 2016!

2016 heralded some victorious achievements for intersex education, visibility and legal recognition, and the Intersex Campaign for Equality is proud to have played a role. This New Year’s we celebrate that intersex voices are being heard, respected, and amplified throughout the world, and that non-binary intersex Americans have, for the first time, been accurately, legally… Continue Reading

NBCNews.com covers NYC’s Intersex Birth Certificate & Zzyym’s Passport Lawsuit

NBCNews.com covers NYC’s Intersex Birth Certificate & Zzyym’s Passport Lawsuit

Great piece in NBCNews.com of the recent issuing of Sara Kelly Keenan’s “intersex” birth certificate, featuring coverage of our own Dana Zzyym’s historic passport lawsuit for non binary intersex gender recognition, and Jamie Shupe’s non binary gender recognition in Oregon. “Not all intersex people will choose to identify legally as intersex,” Keenan told NBC Out,… Continue Reading

“Intersex” Birth Certificate Issued in New York City!

“Intersex” Birth Certificate Issued in New York City!

We recently received news from intersex recognition activist extraordinaire, Sara Kelly Keenan–the first legally recognized non-binary Californian–that the city of New York has amended their birth certificate to read “Intersex”!!!!! We commend Keenan for her efforts, and New York City for recognizing that intersex people exist and deserve to be recognized! For hundreds of years,… Continue Reading

Together We Fixed it: De-Pathologization Win in Nat’l Geographic!

Together We Fixed it: De-Pathologization Win in Nat’l Geographic!

What a great Christmas/Hanukkah gift to the intersex community to have our concerns listened to & addressed! As this National Geographic article discusses, their January “Gender Revolution” issue has prompted many questions, one of them initiated by our founding director Hida Viloria–who is quoted in the piece–as well as several other intersex activists and the… Continue Reading

NBC News on Third Gender Option Explosion in the U.S.!

NBC News on Third Gender Option Explosion in the U.S.!

The recent landmark court ruling in our very own Dana Zzyym’s lawsuit for federal third gender recognition is covered in this NBC News article about the growing third gender option developments in the U.S. Last month, as outlined by Lambda Legal, Dana’s representatives in the lawsuit, “…a judge found that the State Department violated federal… Continue Reading

Intersex Bodily Autonomy & Self Determination Honored in S. African Case!

Intersex Bodily Autonomy & Self Determination Honored in S. African Case!

“Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini said government recognises that being intersex is a sexual characteristic, and not a medical condition. Speaking at a conference when SA joined the global fight to stop genital surgery on intersex babies said she believed the practice to be harmful and should therefore be stopped.” This fantastic news, reported yesterday… Continue Reading

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