Document Reveals LGBTI Complaints Led To Gender-Free Driver’s Licences

The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) scrapped gender on all Queensland licences after complaints from the LGBTI community.

TMR stopped recording people’s gender and height for all new and renewed licences in October 2016. It said the changes were necessary to make driver’s and marine licences compliant with new anti-discrimination laws.

However, an internal document obtained by The Courier-Mail states that gender and height were removed because of complaints that collecting the information may be viewed as discriminatory.

Further personal information including eye and hair colour has also being scrubbed from records attached to licences because it may be “perceived as discriminatory”.

“TMR has received complaints and suggestions from members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community about displaying gender/sex (M or F) on TMR cards,” the document revealed.

But a government spokesman said the change came down to a number of reasons — a lot of which had to do with advancements in technology.

The spokesman said the main reasons for the change, which weren’t identified in the TMR document, were amendments to federal sex discrimination laws and technological advancements around facial recognition.

“They should have been (included in the document) and we’ve asked that this additional information be included.”

Police will still have access to information on gender through databases, and drivers will still be asked to nominate their gender when applying for a licence.

People who have a current licence but do not want it to show their gender or height are able to apply for replacement card without this information.

Rod Gardiner

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