State lawmakers consider gender-neutral option for licenses, birth certificates

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NORWALK -

Connecticut could become one of the first states in the country to offer a gender neutral option on drivers licenses and birth certificates.

State lawmakers were hearing emotional testimony on the issue Monday afternoon.

Licenses and birth certificates in Connecticut currently require residents to be listed as male or female, but a bill would create a third option of "X" for people who are intersex. Only four other states offer that now.

Part of the bill would ban doctors from performing "medically unnecessary surgeries" on intersex patients. But the bill doesn’t specify what procedures are medically necessary, and it doesn't specify who qualifies as intersex.

The bill's sponsor says the intent is to require a doctor's note. These protections might not extend to transgender people who are anatomically one sex -- but identify as another.

Sarah Kosheff, of Bridgeport, was born with male testicles inside her body that were later removed through surgery when she was 10 years old, by a doctor citing a questionable cancer risk. She never had a say in that procedure.

Kosheff submitted her own story supporting the bill's ban on "unnecessary medical procedures."

"We are not broken for being made a little bit different," says Kosheff.

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