Governor: People should be identified as they want to be identified

Local Politics

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – The Governor of Utah weighed in on a bill that would ban transgender people from changing the gender on their birth certificates at his monthly press conference Thursday.

The bill in question is H.B. 153, which not only tries to legally define sex as well as what it means to be “male” or “female,” but would make it impossible for people to change the gender listed on their birth certificate.

When asked about the bill, Gov. Herbert seemed to speak against it, saying, “I certainly agree that if people want to be identified as whatever is they want to be identified, if that’s a gender issue, if that’s a sexual orientation, they ought to have the ability to do that.”

He also said there should a process in place for them to be able to change the public record to match their identity and “there’s no reason why we should stop it.” 

As it stands,  a court order is needed to change the gender marker on a birth certificate, but the requirements to get that change aren’t legally defined, leaving it up to the discretion of individual judges.

Republican State Rep. Merrill Nelson of Grantsville introduced H.B. 153— Utah Vital Statistics Act Amendments—on Tuesday.

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Glen Mills

Chief Political Correspondent

 Glen is honored to be delivering the news of the day every weeknight at 5, 6, and 10 in his home state. He is an award-winning veteran journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team as a weekend anchor in June 2013. Over the years, he held various positions at the station as he worked his way up to the main anchor chair. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent and hosts Inside Utah Politics, which airs every Sunday. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...