In Montana in the US, a rule that blocks transgender people from changing their birth certificates even if they undergo gender-confirmation surgery has been made permanent.
Earlier, transgender plaintiffs who were represented by the ACLU of Montana petitioned state Judge Michael Moses to strike down a 2021 law that made it difficult for transgender people to change their birth certificates. This law specifically stated that people had to have a “surgical procedure” before they could change the sex listed on their birth certificate.
But the Republican governor Greg Gianforte’s administration came up with the new rule, deciding on an anti-transgender implementation to block all changes to birth certificates even after surgery.
Under the new rule, the state’s Department of Public Health and Human Services would no longer record the category of “gender” on people’s birth certificates, replacing that category with a listing for “sex” — either male or female — that may only be changed in rare circumstances (particularly: if someone’s sex is misidentified when they’re born, or if the sex was wrongly recorded as a result of “a scrivener’s error”).
This rule stressed that sex is “immutable,” while gender is a “social construct” that can change over time.
Many American states now have anti-LGBTQIA policies that particularly curb the human rights of transgender people. Similar to the new rule in Montana, Tennessee, Oklahoma and West Virginia also have similar prohibitions against birth certificate changes.