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Boston marriage licenses no longer require gender identification

People applying for marriage licenses in Boston will no longer be required to identify their sex or gender when filling out forms, thanks to a new set of guidelines aimed at empowering gender-diverse residents.

The changes, which were adopted by the city on Tuesday, were put in place to provide “more dignified experiences” for all city residents — including those whose gender and sexual identities have “historically not been recognized or supported by government agencies.”

Residents who are already married and wish to have an updated marriage license issued without their sex or gender identification can do so by contacting the city registry.

“Our fundamental charge in public service is ensuring that our services and opportunities reach everyone, and that starts with affirming and supporting constituents of all identities,” Mayor Michelle Wu said in a statement.

“Boston must continue to work to dismantle the historic inequities and injustices that persist. This update to Boston marriage licenses is a huge step in building a city that is truly inclusive,” she added.

The change is the first the city has made based on its new gender-aware guidelines, which were developed with members of the city’s LGBTQ community and are designed to better inform city employees on how to engage with people when it comes to gender identity.

“We’re committed to ensuring that all City employees and departments get the proper support to embed gender-inclusive language and practices into the way they engage with residents and ask for personal information,” said Julia Gutierrez, the city’s chief digital officer.

The guidelines will be regularly reviewed based on the feedback the city receives, Gutierrez added.

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