A passenger holds a Canadian passport before boarding a flight in Ottawa on Jan 23, 2007. (Photo: Tom Hanson/CP)Daye said the longer the government waits to move to gender-neutral identity documents, the longer it exposes transgender Canadians and other members of the LGBTQ2 community to potential problems or danger. Consultations the commission has held with transgender Canadians on this topic have shown concerns about travellers blocked from getting on a flight because they don't look or match the gender listed on their passport, or becoming the subject to harassment, said Daye, a senior policy adviser to the commission on LGBTQ2 issues. "Sometimes when you toss out the idea that this is harmful and we need to change this one thing, people go, 'but there are these other 300 things and we need to change all of them and we have to do a big effort,'" Daye said.
'Great arc of history sweeping toward justice'
Seven countries allow third sex designation on their passportsDocuments from June 2015 show officials from Citizenship and Immigration Canada were looking into what they called "identity management" issues should someone from a country that allows a third sex designation on their passports apply for Canadian immigration documents. Internationally, there is a "growing recognition of a third sex/gender category...for those who identify as intersex, indeterminate, or unspecified," officials from ESDC wrote as part of a presentation last year with Citizenship and Immigration Canada counterparts. Seven countries allow a third sex designation on their passports — Australia, Bangladesh, Germany, India, Nepal, New Zealand and Pakistan.
'X' marks spot
Ontario taking actionIn May, the department told The Canadian Press the sex designation data from the registry is used primarily for gender-based analysis and not for determining eligibility for benefits. Federal and provincial agencies that use the information to validate identities raised concerns over the complete removal of sex information from the registry. ESDC has yet to provide an update on the policy review. Last month, Ontario announced it would become the first province to allow for a third sex designation on health cards and on driver's licences.
ALSO ON HUFFPOST: