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Bill banning gender change on birth certificate headed to Idaho House floor

House Bill 509 was sent to the floor by the State Affairs committee on Friday

BOISE, Idaho — A bill that would prevent transgender Idahoans from changing their gender on their birth certificate was sent to the House floor on Friday morning with a party-line vote.

House Bill 509 would ban transgender individuals from changing the gender listed on their birth certificate after the first year of life. Democrats say the bill is a violation of a provision to the court case FV v. Barron, which requires Idahoans to be able to change their gender on their birth certificate.

Idahoans are currently able to update their birth certificates to align with their gender identity.

Should this bill pass, state employees responsible for mandating birth certificate changes will be given a choice of whether or not to assist the individual in changing their gender on their birth certificate. 

Democrats say if the employee does help, they will be in violation of the legislature's law, but if the employee refuses to help, they will be in violation of the court decision and technically held in contempt of court, according to the Communications Director for the Idaho House/Senate Democrats Hailie Johnson-Waskow. 

Rep. John Gannon, D-Boise, told the State Affairs Committee that this legislation served no purpose other than to discriminate against a vulnerable population in Idaho.

“This legislation is a legal disaster, setting the state of Idaho up for an expensive losing lawsuit paid for by taxpayers and putting state officials at risk of contempt proceedings," Gannon said. "Let’s get to work on property taxes, education funding, and the issues that affect us in our daily lives. This legislation serves no purpose but to raise emotions and discriminate against an already vulnerable population.” 

The State Affairs committee cannot comment on the bill at the moment, but the official minutes of this meeting will be available in the coming days.

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