Chile has issued its first gender-neutral ID to Shane Cienfuegos, a 29-year-old nonbinary transgender activist and writer.
They received an ID at a civil registry in Santiago on Friday Oct. 14 with the gender designation of X instead of “M” for male or “F” for “female”.
Cienfuegos describes themselves as transgender and nonbinary, going by the gender-neutral Spanish pronoun “elle” (they).
They won a landmark nine-year lawsuit in July to be recognized as non-binary in the majority Catholic country.
“I’ve had to fight for my life on the street I don’t know how many times,” they told AFP. “I have survived. I have made myself tough to survive a cruel, dehumanizing system.”
Chile passed a law in 2018 to allow people to undergo sex reassignment surgery from the age of 14.
In December last year, it legalized same-sex marriage.
However, the country still does not legally recognize genders other than male or female, and anyone hoping to receive an ID with “X” gender will also have to go through a legal process, according to AFP.
In July last year, Argentina became the first country in Latin America to introduce gender-neutral IDs for nonbinary people, joining countries Canada, Australia, India, Pakistan and New Zealand.