Shane Cienfuegos has become the first person in Chilean history to receive a non-binary national identity document.
Cienfuegos, 29, who leads the social intervention activities of the Chilean Organization for Trans Diversity, obtained the document on Friday, after a nine-year bureaucratic and legal battle.
”It’s not my victory; it’s a collective victory,’ Cinefuegos told reporters as he showed the ID card, which has an ‘X’ next to the gender entry rather than male or female.
Argentina was the first country in Latin America to recognize non-binary people in legal documents in July 2021. Mexico and Colombia followed, but like Chile, they only grant such recognition to people who win a court decision.
Around the world, several countries recognize non-binary people in identity documents, including Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. US citizens can select “X” as a gender marker on their passports since April.
Lorena Lorca, Cinefuegos’ lawyer, said this was the first case in Chile of someone receiving a document with the letter “X” in a country that does not legally recognize non-binary people. Lorca said there were 60 similar cases in Chile, seven of which received favorable convictions.
Cienfuegos said no one should have to wait that long “to receive legal recognition of something that you are.”
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