Around 600 Belgians changed gender marker on ID card last year

Around 600 Belgians changed the gender marker on their ID cards in 2022, the country's Institute for the Equality of Women and Men announced on Thursday.

Last year, 569 people updated their gender registration, with 284 registering as male and 285 as female. "The correct gender registration is an important recognition on paper for part of the trans community," said the institute's deputy director, Liesbet Stevens.

"Only the gender registration of non-binary people still needs to be made possible"

More than 3,829 Belgians have officially changed their gender marker since 1993, when the national register began to systematically record changes. A total of 55,000 trans and non-binary people live in Belgium, according to the institute's estimates.

Changing one's gender identity registration will soon become easier in Belgium. The country recently passed a new law allowing anyone who wants to change their gender marker or first name to do so multiple times through a simple procedure.

Until 2018, Belgium required trans people to undergo sterilisation in order to change their gender marker. Removing the medical requirement immediately impacted the number of Belgians adjusting their gender registration. The number rose from 110 people in 2017 to 740 in 2018.

"Only the gender registration of non-binary people still needs to be made possible, as not everyone feels comfortable in one of the two M or F boxes," Stevens said. The Chamber has already expressed its intention to consider the introduction of a non-binary gender marker at a later stage.



2023 Brussels Pride parade © BELGA PHOTO NICOLAS MAETERLINCK

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