Home Consulate Mexico will issue gender-neutral identity documents in the United States and Canada

Mexico will issue gender-neutral identity documents in the United States and Canada

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Consular ID cards will allow Mexicans to refuse to reveal their gender from June 1; other changes include the addition of Indigenous language services

EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) — The government of Mexico plans to issue gender-neutral identity documents to Mexicans living in the United States and Canada. It also plans to hire speakers of five indigenous languages ​​to help those who have immigrated to the United States from communities where Nahuatl, Zapotec, Maya, Otomi and Mixtec are spoken.

The new consular ID card and an expanded phone line for language services will be available June 1, said Jaime Vazquez Bracho Torres, Mexico’s director of consular services.

“This new ID has several new security features – such as a polycarbonate material, similar to our new ePassport, which we recently launched – as well as new inclusivity features, including an ‘X’ in the case of people who identify as gender non-conforming or non-binary,” said Vazquez Bracho.

Speaking at the Mexican consulate in El Paso on Saturday, Vazquez Bracho said Mexico was producing more modern and secure identity documents for its citizens abroad so that foreign governments would not hesitate to accept them. He said states like California and New Mexico already accept the Mexican Consulate ID card, also known ass consular numberas proof of identity when issuing state driver’s licenses.

The back of a new non-binary Mexican consular ID card. (Government of Mexico)

The new electronic passport and the future new consular identity card hide computer chips, holograms and biometric information on the bearer. This makes it possible to accommodate transgender people without worrying about safety. “It is part of an effort to modernize and fight discrimination also through our consular network,” Vazquez Bracho said.

Last March, the US State Department announced that it would give passport applicants the option of selecting “X” instead of “M” (male) or F (female) in their passport applications. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said the same option would apply to other forms of documentation in 2023.

As for the expanded line of language services, government officials and immigration advocates stress the need to serve migrants at the border who speak neither English nor Spanish. Mexico’s 2020 census concluded that up to 6.2% of that country’s 126 million people speak an indigenous language, of which 865,972 speak no Spanish at all.

The consulate in El Paso sees an average of 950 people a week seeking identity documents, protection or other services, Consul General Mauricio Ibarra said.

The matricula is a popular document that has been used for several years by Mexican immigrants who do not have U.S. documents to open bank accounts, contract utilities and identify themselves to local authorities, he said.

The wallet-sized card also allows US residents to prove their Mexican nationality and travel smoothly whenever they visit their home country, he added.

Information for obtaining these documents can be obtained by calling (424)-309-0009 or visiting citas.sre.gob.mx.