THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A court in the Netherlands said Monday that lawmakers should recognize a neutral, third gender, in a groundbreaking ruling for a person who does not identify as male or female.
The court in the southern city of Roermond said that the person’s gender could not be definitively determined at birth. The person was registered as male but later had treatment to become a woman and successfully applied to have her gender officially changed to female.
However the applicant later sought to be listed as a “third gender” — neither male nor female. The person’s identity was not released.
“The time is ripe for recognition of a third gender,” the court said in a statement, that adding that “it is now up to lawmakers” to consider drafting legislation that would formalize a neutral gender.
Transgender activists hailed the ruling as a momentous step in Dutch law.
“This can be called revolutionary within Dutch family law,” Brand Berghouwer of the Netherlands’ Transgender Network said in a statement.