Colorado bill would make it easier for transgender individuals to change birth certificate

Rally Held In Support Of Transgender Community
Posted at 4:59 PM, Feb 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-05 19:04:13-05

DENVER — A Colorado House bill introduced last month would make it easier for transgender individuals to change their birth certificates to reflect their gender designation.

House Bill 19-1039, sponsored by Rep. Daneya Esgar (D-Pueblo) and Sen. Dominick Moreno (D-Adams County), is up for consideration Wednesday in the House Health & Insurance Committee.

Currently, transgender persons in Colorado who have successfully gone through the court system have only one option of an amended birth certificate. This bill would require the state to issue a new birth certificate rather than just an amended one.

Additionally, HB19-1039 would give persons who identify as transgender a more accessible path to changing those documents.

A court order for a legal name change to obtain a new birth certificate with a change in gender designation would no longer be required under the proposed bill. A statement from a professional medical or mental health provider would suffice.

Proponents of the bill call the measure an important move to legitimize people who have gender identity issues and will help end discrimination of transgender and non-binary individuals.

“We know that for many folks, when they don't have matching identity documents, they face the risk of discrimination or harassment,” said Daniel Ramos, executive director of One Colorado. “This policy is another way to make sure transgender people and non-binary people have an identity document.”

But opponents of the measure are expected to testify against the bill at Wednesday's committee hearing.

This bill comes after a November policy change from the Colorado Department of Revenue that allows Coloradans who don’t identify as male or female to use an “X” designation on their driver’s license.

The hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Wednesday in the House Health & Insurance Committee, and Denver7 expects to take a deeper look at what supporters and opponents have to say Wednesday evening.