In Canada an 8 month old baby is believed to be the first child to be born and not be assigned a gender (male or female).
The baby, Searyl Atli Doty, born in November 2016, has been issued a health card without either ‘male’ or ‘female’ asigned. Instead the health certificate comes with a “U” listed in the place of “sex,” according to a June 30 press release from Canada’s Gender Free I.D. Coalition. The “U” was believed to stand for “undetermined” or “unassigned.”
Searyl’s parent, Kori Doty, identifies as non-binary transgender and, as such, wanted to avoid assigning a gender to their child, according to CBC News. The baby was born in British Columbia but “outside of the medical system,” according to the Gender Free I.D. Coalition’s release, so there was no genital inspection following their birth.
Doty’s lawyer called the decision to issue Searyl’s health card without a specified gender a “huge step forward,” telling Canada’s Global News, “The assignment of sex in this culture is done when a medical person lifts up the legs and looks at the baby’s genitals. But we know that the baby’s own gender identity will not develop for some years until after they’re born.”
By identifying Searyl as “U” on the health document, Doty is leaving it up to the child “to decide how they identify, when they are old enough to develop their own gender identity.” They remain hopeful that Searyl’s birth certificate, which has not yet been issued, will also be printed without gender identification.
Already some provinces in Canada, including Ontario and Alberta, are reviewing their policies to include the option of a third non-binary gender in health documents such as birth certificates.
additional reports: Huffington Post