Chicago City Council passed a new ordinance Oct. 7 ensuring that non-binary Chicagoans will not be marginalized in City rules and forms. The new rules take effect within 60 days.
The measure, introduced this past spring by Ald. Andre Vasquez ( 40th Ward ), directs that no City forms ask for an individual's sex unless it is required for medical reasons or as part of an already-existing law. Furthermore, when selection of a gender is required, Chicagoans will now have the option of selecting "nonbinary" as well as the gender non-specific honorific "Mx."
Persons can also choose "they/them" as pronouns when needed, according to the ordinance.
A community organization and former rapper, Vasquez assumed his city council post in May 2019 after defeating incumbent Ald. Patrick J. O'Connor. O'Connor at the time had called out Vasquez for homophobic lyrics he'd used in performances, leading to Vasquez subsequently issuing an public apology.
Chicago Sun-Times reported that, when Vasquez introduced the bill on the Council floor on Sept. 21, he said that it was an attempt to further make amends with LGBTQ persons who may have been harmed by the lyrics.
Chicago Sun-Times' article is at chicago.suntimes.com/2020/9/21/21449442/gender-equality-transgender-lgbtq-chicago-city-council-committee-forms .