Biden administration recognizes Transgender Day of Visibility

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The White House. Image by David Mark from Pixabay

The Biden administration recognized Transgender Day of Visibility with policy changes to support trans people.

The State Department is announcing that beginning on April 11, 2022, all U.S. citizens will be able select an “X” as their gender marker on their U.S. passport application. Information on how to apply will be available at travel.state.gov/gender.

Homeland Security will:

  • Implementing enhanced screening technology. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will soon begin updating its Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) body scanners. By replacing the current, gender-based system with this more accurate technology, TSA will improve the customer experience of transgender travelers who have previously been required to undergo additional screening due to alarms in sensitive areas. TSA will begin deploying this new technology in airports throughout the country later this year.
  • Expanding airline partnerships to enhance the overall travel experience.  TSA is working closely with air carriers across the nation to promote the use and acceptance of the “X” gender marker to ensure more efficient and accurate passenger processing.
  • Streamlining identity validation. TSA has updated its Standard Operating Procedures to remove gender considerations when validating a traveler’s identification at airport security checkpoints.
  • Updating TSA PreCheck and CBP Trusted Traveler Programs enrollment to include “X” gender markers. 

Among other changes include giving an option to select gender identity on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and $10 million in funding for research on how to best add questions about sexual orientation and gender identity to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.

The administration also pointed to its opposition to anti-trans bills that have been passed across the country, affirming access to gender-affirming care, filing amicus briefs in support of transgender people in court cases, reversing the ban on trans service members and supporting the Equality Act.

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