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DETROIT – A hearing date has been reset for Nov. 4 in the case of Love v. Johnson, a lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Michigan against the state of Michigan challenging the Secretary of State’s gender marker policy on driver’s licenses and state IDs. The court will decide to either dismiss the case or have it move to trial.
The lawsuit was filed against the state on May 21 on behalf of six plaintiffs challenging a department policy that makes it impossible for many transgender individuals to correct the gender marker on their driver’s licenses and other forms of identification.
While some states currently require a simple court order before changing the gender designation on a birth certificate, Michigan is not one of those states. In 2011, then Secretary of State Ruth Johnson implemented a policy that refuses to allow a change of the gender marker on a driver’s license or state ID unless the person can produce an amended birth certificate showing the correct gender.
However, obtaining an amended birth certificate can be difficult if not impossible for people born in Michigan. State law requires that a person undergo gender confirmation surgery to receive an amended birth certificate, and not every trans man and woman needs or wants the procedure.
The hearing will commence at 2 p.m. Nov. 4 in room 851 of the Federal District Courthouse, located at 231 W. Lafayette Boulevard in Detroit.
LGBT Special Projects Attorney for the ACLU of Michigan, Jay Kaplan, has asked members of the LGBT and allied community to pack the courtroom with as many supporters as possible, particularly transgender community members.