NYC birth certificate plan: 'X' gender category

The traditional two boxes "male" or "female" on New York City birth certificates could be a thing of the past. For people born in New York City, a third gender category may soon be available.

City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who is introducing the legislation, said the third option would be a box labeled "X" and would be something adults could choose for their own birth certificates. 

As the law stands now, if parents of a newborn do not want to identify the sex, they can say the sex of the child is "unknown." But transgender adults need a letter from a doctor to change their gender on the government form.

Ashton, who is a transgender man, said he wishes his parents had the "X" option when he was born. But not everyone agrees with the idea.

If the proposal passes, New York City would join California, Oregon, and Washington with a third gender option.

Johnson said this is an extension of 2014 legislation that allows transgender adults to change their gender on their birth certificates without having sex-change surgery. He is expected to introduce the proposal on Thursday. Several public hearings will be held later this month.

From January 2015 to March 2017, more than 700 New Yorkers got their birth certificates corrected.