A Canadian parent is fighting to let their child choose their own gender by holding out for a birth certificate with no mention of gender.
Kori Doty, from British Columbia, identifies as non-binary genderqueer trans and would prefer baby Searyl Atli, born last November, to discover their own gender.
Doty, who uses ‘they/them/their’ pronouns for themselves and the eight-month-old baby, says that Canadian authorities have agreed to issue a health card with a ‘U’ in the gender box so medical services can be accessed.
However the province is reportedly refusing to issue a genderless birth certificate and Doty has applied for a judicial review.
CBC quotes Doty as saying they want to let the child make their own choice, whatever that may be, rather than have a gender assigned according to genitalia: “I’m raising Searyl in such a way that until they have the sense of self and command of vocabulary to tell me who they are, I'm recognizing them as a baby and trying to give them all the love and support to be the most whole person that they can be outside of the restrictions that come with the boy box and the girl box.”
They added: “When I was born, doctors looked at my genitals and made assumptions about who I would be, and those assignments followed me and followed my identification throughout my life. Those assumptions were incorrect, and I ended up having to do a lot of adjustments since then.”
While some Canadian provinces are reviewing policies with a view to potentially adding a third gender box for non-binary, Doty is campaigning for no gender identification on documents at all, arguing that the option could single people out for discrimination.
Along with seven other complainants, CBS News reports, Doty is involved with the case being considered by the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal on whether gender should be included on birth certificates.
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