by Guy Page
A bill introduced into the Vermont House of Representatives Thursday, January 13 lawmakers would allow the State Registrar to change gender identity on a birth certificate.
H628, sponsored by Rep. Taylor Small (P/D-Winooski), a transgender person, and 32 others (all Democrats, Progressives and/or independents, would “authorize the State Registrar to amend or issue a new birth certificate to reflect an individual’s gender identity.”
It also would authorize the VT Dept. of Health to adopt rules that add new gender pronouns to the list that may be used on birth records.
The bill’s statement of intent is “to promote equity by allowing all individuals, regardless of gender, to amend their vital records to accuratel reflect and affirm their identities. There is a long history of discrimination and violence against the LGBTQIA+ community. This act serves to mitigate future harm through the creation of a simple and equitable system to provide for all gender marker changes on a Vermont birth certificate to be made through means such as self-attestation.”
Current state law has a lengthy process for “change of sex” on a birth certificate. The proposed law would replace the old language with this paragraph: “It is the policy of the State of Vermont to honor and acknowledge all gender identities and protect public health and dignity of all individuals in Vermont, irrespective of their gender. Accordingly, the State should adopt a simple process by which an individual may amend the marker on a birth certificate to reflect the individual’s gender identity.”
The bill was referred to the Committee on Human Services.