June 25, 2023 -TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Transgender people born in Kansas could be prevented from changing their birth certificates to reflect their gender identities if the state’s conservative Republican attorney general is successful with a legal move he launched late Friday.
Attorney General Kris Kobach filed a request in federal court asking a judge to end a requirement for Kansas to allow transgender people to change their birth certificates. He is not seeking to undo past changes, only prevent them going forward.
U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree imposed the requirement in 2019 to settle a lawsuit filed by four transgender Kansas residents against three state health department officials. The suit challenged a policy that critics said prevented transgender people from making changes even after transitioning, legally changing their names and obtaining new driver’s licenses and Social Security cards.
Luc Bensimon, a Black transgender activist who was one of the plaintiffs in that lawsuit, said Saturday he was already getting calls and emails from people trying to change their birth certificates who are concerned they won’t be able to complete the process.
“We didn’t go through that case just to have him try and change it now,” Bensimon said. “I thought this was already dealt with but I have the energy to go back and deal with it again if we have to.”