Instead of identifying themselves as either male or female, residents who determine themselves to be “non-binary” will now have the option to choose the letter X to avoid revealing their biological gender.
Oregon’s Driver and Motor Vehicle Services said it introduced the practice after a judge in Oregon ruled last year that veteran Jamie Shupe, who had been living as a woman, could be legally recognized as neither man nor woman but instead as “gender non-binary,” becoming the first person in the United States to do so.
Shupe told NBC News that he and his partner watched on live-stream as transportation officials took a vote on the matter, describing it as a “highly emotional” moment.
“It was highly emotional. Me and Sandy watched it on YouTube, the whole time the two of us tightly clinging to each other, and crying. I keep drying them, but the tears keep coming,” he said.
Last week, Washington, DC, became the first jurisdiction to offer a gender-neutral driver’s license, and lawmakers in California and New York are drawing up similar legislation.