Costa Rica Joins Global Push to Recognize Legal Gender Self-Identification

(Human Rights Watch) In June, Costa Rica’s president signed a directive and decree ordering government agencies that issue official documents to recognize gender identity based on self-declaration.
Presidente Carlos Alvarado and Comisionado para asuntos LGTBI Luis Salazar, Casa Presidencial, Costa Rica. 28 Junio 2018. Foto: Roberto Carlos Sánchez
The move follows an Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) advisory opinion issued in January, which asserted that countries should establish efficient, inexpensive, and straightforward procedures to allow legal recognition based solely on the “the free and autonomous decision of each person.”
In recent years, in response to a strong push by transgender rights groups, countries around the world have developed policies on legal gender recognition rooted in deference to a person’s self-identification, rather than a determination by a government official, doctor,

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