Alberta | News | Transgender

12-Year-Old Transgender Boy in Alberta Granted New Birth Certificate Recognizing Him as Male: VIDEO

Wren

History was made on Sunday in Alberta at a brunch in Edmonton when culture minister Heather Klimchuk presented Wren Kauffman with a new birth certificate recognizing him as male, Global News reports:

Kauffman had filed a complaint with the Alberta Human Rights Commission over the inability to change the sex on his birth certificate.

Alberta law states that transgender persons must have reassignment surgery before they can change the sex on their birth certificates, but Premier Dave Hancock said in April that the surgery requirement will be dropped.

Wren, who was born a girl, had said it was stressful being listed as female.

A week after Hancock made the announcement, a judge ruled that the Alberta law dealing with birth certificates violates the rights of transgender people.

You may remember Wren from a story we posted back in September 2013.

Watch the report, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Comments

  1. I am THRILLED by this! And in ALBERTA no less! Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. Kudos to his terrific parents, and to the legislators who made this possible!

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Jun 17, 2014 12:09:18 PM


  2. This is lovely news. Look how happy the boy and his family are. When more traditionally conservative places like Alberta and taking such progressive steps, it gives me tremendous hope.

    Posted by: Smartypants | Jun 17, 2014 12:19:27 PM


  3. All the best Wren.

    Posted by: Bollox | Jun 17, 2014 12:26:52 PM


  4. At 12, is it really safe to say kids are consciously ready to make this decision? also, altering a birth certificate isn't like: From now, he was born black (after many tanning sessions)?

    Posted by: Alain | Jun 17, 2014 12:31:55 PM


  5. I'm impressed that the crazy anti-trans trolls who think they invented their opinions only this morning and don't know what science is didn't show up until the fourth post!

    Is there hope for Trollroad?

    Stay tuned!

    Posted by: oncemorewithfeeling | Jun 17, 2014 12:35:35 PM


  6. @ALAIN -- That didn't take long. I don't know about you, but I knew that I was gay when I was 4 years old. I didn't know what my feelings meant at that young age, but I certainly did before I was 12. Your "black/tanning sessions" is rude and disrespectful. Just what we'd expect from an insensitivite bigot.

    Posted by: Gigi | Jun 17, 2014 12:37:56 PM


  7. I'd be curious to see how they actually change the birth certificate in this situation. Is it just an addendum that notes the person identifies their gender as male or female, or do they actually reissue the document as if they were born a different sex? Is there a differentiation between sex and gender on the document? I totally see the value of being recognized as your proper gender and having the documentation to back that up, and I support it, but it just seems that changing the sex a child is born with on paper is just...misinformation? Again, I fully support trans people having their proper gender represented...just curious how the document actually changes.

    Posted by: mb | Jun 17, 2014 12:38:48 PM


  8. I'm so delighted for him.
    He must be the happiest boy in the world today.......
    I don't give a flying phuck what a birth paper says; you are yourself and know yourself.
    And this boy knows he is a boy.

    @ GIGI :
    I'm with you ; I knew I was gay when I was four , I can remember the exact place, the class I was in, the teachers name.....but not the name of the beautiful boy in the play yard.
    Ok; that's a different argument.
    I'm happy for this boy and for progressive Canada.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Jun 17, 2014 12:54:11 PM


  9. Doing this to a child, especially before reaching puberty, is absolutely atrocious. Stop giving hormones to minor children!

    Posted by: tad | Jun 17, 2014 1:29:17 PM


  10. "Tad/Alain": Shut the F up.

    Posted by: Sean Maloney | Jun 17, 2014 1:44:04 PM


  11. @Tad: I don't recall anyone saying that this boy was being given hormones. Did you get that from somewhere? Or was it made up from whole cloth?

    Posted by: TheDrDonna | Jun 17, 2014 1:47:14 PM


  12. Tad, there is nothing in this post or the earlier post about Wren that they are giving him hormones. There is also nothing to indicate that adults are "doing this" to Wren, only that the adults in his life love him, respect his identifying as male, and are doing what they are able to support and nurture his health growth to manhood. Frankly, it makes me a bit envious and enormously hopeful.

    Posted by: Smartypants | Jun 17, 2014 1:47:14 PM


  13. I'm very happy for him and his family. BUT - I have two issues with it. One, he is not yet of the legal age of consent, and so changing this legal document should not be done - imo. And after all, what is the purpose of changing one's birth certificate gender except as a basis for changing other legal documents such as a drivers license. I doubt the 12-year-old can yet obtain any legal documents which rely on the birth certificate for gender information. If it's just to make him feel good, I don't think that's a legitimate reason for changing a document as vital as a birth certificate. So what's the harm in waiting till he's of legal consent age?

    Second, I hope this is done by amendment as opposed to replacement. I'm all for transgender rights and, in the end, it's not all that important if a birth record is changed - but it's a legal record of birth and I'm just leery of any alteration of that document that's not in the form of an amendment that leaves the original intact for accurate record keeping.

    Posted by: Zlick | Jun 17, 2014 1:53:55 PM


  14. The acceptance and support this young man is enjoying in his home, school and country is fantastic. I do not believe that Wren is "really" a boy or that it's even possible to be "born in the wrong body - but I am happy to treat Wren as the gender he desires.

    That said, the birth certificate change is a bit odd. Wren was, in fact, born female and he will continue to have the genetics and biology of a female even if he eventually chooses hormone therapy and/or surgery.

    That a transgender boy in such a supportive environment - seeming complete acceptance by his family, friends and community - is still "stressed" by the factual information on his birth certificate is not a good sign for this child's future mental health.

    Of course, there's nothing wrong with Wren wanting the change for practical reasons around interacting with institutions and agencies that review birth certificates - having to explain your transgender status in contexts where, except for needing a birth certificate, gender is irrelevant is no fun, I'm sure (though coming out to those around you is the best way to advance social acceptance).

    But if the desire for the birth certificate change is more an emotional need for a factual document not to remind you of the facts of your birth and the truth of your biology, I don't think that's a good sign.

    I would not deny the change merely because I am suspicious of the motivation - even in Canada I believe people should have the right to define their own pursuit of happiness. I am more concerned about long term consequences of letting your happiness be determined by something like this.

    To put it another way, I think it's entirely psychologically healthy to want to live and be treated as a gender different than one assigned to you at birth because of your biology. I think it is unhealthy, however, to need to deny the historical/biological facts of your life.

    Posted by: kipp | Jun 17, 2014 2:08:12 PM


  15. @ TAD :
    I don'y think you should give the original birth cert. the infallibility which you see to do.
    And as for changing the document 'to make him feel good'.....how about ' changing the document to reflect what he is by gender'- a boy.
    Now why should he have to wait for that truth ?

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Jun 17, 2014 2:12:10 PM


  16. @ 12 are they sure it isn't the parents' homophobia insisting their child is a male instead of a butch lesbian

    Posted by: Moz's | Jun 17, 2014 2:13:40 PM


  17. nothing like a bunch of non-trans people who probably don't even have transgender friends weighing in on how and what transgender people are.

    hilarity.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Jun 17, 2014 2:18:00 PM


  18. @MOZ,

    I would go further to ask are we sure it isn't the child's own internalized sexism that has caused him to believe he is "really" a boy merely because he is gender nonconforming...

    Posted by: kipp | Jun 17, 2014 2:20:06 PM


  19. Dear Kipp, it's time you went out and actually made friends with people who are transgender.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Jun 17, 2014 2:26:35 PM


  20. It's funny how people seem to think that this child couldn't possibly be trans, because of internalized sexism or homophobia. It's kind of like, "We're okay with gender nonconformity UP TO THIS POINT AND NO FURTHER."

    Guessing at a prepubescent child's sexuality is weird, no matter the context.

    Posted by: TheDrDonna | Jun 17, 2014 2:38:46 PM


  21. The problem with body dysphoria is mainly a cultural one. Some –like racial, are discouraged- others (like gender, the one in the article) are becoming more accepted, others like beauty surgeries never were that much questioned to begin with. And others are completely unadvised, like those who transcend any human reality (like those who identify with other species). In all cases is a psychological condition (that is, the person do not agree with their body, even when there is no underlying health issue) so the question would be what the psychological approaches are in each and where to establish the limits (culturally speaking, that is, culture is not a fixed thing).

    Posted by: SAYTHETRUTH | Jun 17, 2014 2:54:55 PM


  22. The problem with body dysphoria is mainly a cultural one. Some –like racial, are discouraged- others (like gender, the one in the article) are becoming more accepted, others like beauty surgeries never were that much questioned to begin with. And others are completely unadvised, like those who transcend any human reality (like those who identify with other species). In all cases is a psychological condition (that is, the person do not agree with their body, even when there is no underlying health issue) so the question would be what the psychological approaches are in each case and where to establish the limits (culturally speaking, that is, culture is not a fixed thing).

    Posted by: SAYTHETRUTH | Jun 17, 2014 2:57:19 PM


  23. @SayTheTruth: I don't think you can easily lump things like transracialism and body dysmorphia and gender dysphoria all together like that. The research that has been done up to this point shows that the first two do respond to psychiatric treatment, and as a result that is the preferred treatment path. Severe gender dysphoria, however, does not respond to psychiatric treatment alone, and as a result the recommended treatment path is through medical transition, which has been found to be the only known treatment that does work.

    Posted by: TheDrDonna | Jun 17, 2014 3:04:04 PM


  24. It's great to see gay guys talking just like straight bigots talk about gays. How can you idiots not see this?

    As for not giving teens hormones, learn something about biology and how doctors treat trans kids. Doctors often give trans kids treatments to delay puberty. After a period time, the teens start hormone treatments.

    Hormone treatments allow their bodies to match their inner selves. Instead of forcing a transwoman to undergo costly and lengthy surgery to transform her male features to female, she can can develop them naturally. Why should a transgirl be forced to develop man-hands? Why should a transboy be forced to develop breasts or womanly hips?

    The need for some of you to force trans people to conform to meet your expectations is pathetically hypocritical.

    Posted by: Vince | Jun 17, 2014 3:12:41 PM


  25. I have transgender friends. They know they were born a different gender than they later desired to express, and they know the record of their birth was true at the time that record was made. That's what records are. They do not get CHANGED when the situation changes; they get AMENDED. That's the proper legal course, and it's what I support. An amended birth certificate is totally legitimate and can be used as the basis for other documents.

    Posted by: Zlick | Jun 17, 2014 3:32:34 PM


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