Non-gendered recognition

// 12 September 2008

Here’s the ideal opportunity for the gender abolitionists amongst us to do something simple and positive to show our support for someone who’s trying to make a practical difference.

Christie Elan-Cane has made a request for support in per fight for legal and social recognition outside the societal gender system in the UK and has sent out the following email:

Dear All

As you are most probably aware, my local parliamentary representative Simon Hughes MP is drafting proposed new legislation that will grant certain rights to individuals who do not identify as male or female and for whom compulsory gendered categorisation into the societal gender system is not appropriate.

The purpose of legislation is to accord legal recognition for identities other than male and female. The outcome of legal recognition of existence outside the gendered societal system will be that we will finally be accorded the basic human right to be acknowledged and registered in our true identity. This will result in greater social recognition and strengthen our position when exposed to discrimination and oppression from the gendered majority.

The proposed legislation will initially state the case for necessity of provision of an alternative option alongside male and female in sex/gender field on forms for application and registration, such as passport application, the Census etc. We are presenting the case for a third option of ‘non gender-specific’, ‘gender not specified’ or ‘other’ on all forms.

In order for the legislation to have any chance of succeeding in early stages of procession through parliament, it is vital that we can demonstrate a strong social need for recognition of identities that have until now been unrecognised by law in all western countries and ignored by gendered society.

*This is where I need the help and support of EVERY resident in the UK who does not identify as male or female and for whom the options of male and female provided by gendered society are irrelevant, inadequate and insulting.*

I am appealing to hear from everyone who is affected by this issue and who is currently forced to deny and/or compromise their identity when presented with the question of stating their sex/gender in order to

obtain a passport, driver’s licence or any other documentation or service where a gendered role is demanded before the individual can access a service or obtain necessary documentation in order for the individual to function within society.

I am collecting as many names as possible that will be forwarded to Simon Hughes’ parliamentary office. The details will be used to petition support for this fundamental human rights issue.

Please send an email to my address with *I SUPPORT NON GENDER-SPECIFIC OPTION* in the subject line. Give your full name and preferably a full address in the United Kingdom where you are resident. If you would rather not provide address details, write anyway with just your name but responses with a valid UK address should carry more weight if used to petition support from other ministers.

Please do not send any attachment documents with your email.

*A request to organisations in UK and outside the UK*: please put a notice on your own website to alert as many people as possible. I also request that everyone who feels strongly about this issue lobbies their own local parliamentary representative and urges them to support this action.

Once more, thanks to everyone who has expressed their support so far and I promise to keep you updated with progress. You can also view my website at

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