HRC Blog

D.C. Council Introduces Bill to Protect the Identities of Transgender People

The District of Columbia may soon join 23 states and the State Department in protecting the identities of people who undergo gender transitions.

Under current D.C. law, people who have their names changed must publish notices in the newspaper once a week for three consecutive weeks. This regulation can inadvertently out transgender people who legally change their names and request new birth certificates with proper gender markers.

The Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act would exempt transgender people from the public notice requirement. It would also allow transgender people to seal their original birth certificates from public view with an affidavit from a medical professional.

Councilmember David Catania read the bill on record, with all 13 members of Council listed as introducers or sponsors.

The bill is named after Deoni Jones, a transgender woman who was killed last February in Northeast D.C.

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