21st June 2024
Barcelona News Catalonia News Madrid News Main News

German national becomes first person in Spain to have non-binary status on ID

A German national living in Seville has become the first person in Spain to be identified on ID certificates neither as a man or a woman, but as ‘indeterminate’, ‘X’ or non-binary.

Andalusia’s High Court of Justice ruled in favour of Andrea Speck this week, stating that the Interior Ministry should put ‘indeterminate gender’ on the German national’s identity papers in Spain.

Speck finally won a legal battle that had been going on for five years, ever since the German national realised that they appeared as a ‘man’ in Spain’s Central Registry of Foreigners.

The ruling now opens the door for the Interior Ministry to allow a third box for people to check when they choose their gender, stating ‘indeterminate’ as well as man and woman.  

‘I am elated by the sentence, but I feel that the political and educational work begins now, it is an opportunity for the recognition of non-binary people,’ Speck told newspaper El País

‘It has been a long and difficult road, with many problems, the first of which is the lack of references, neither in the media nor in my close circle. In the process, you’re always alone.’  

In February 2023, Spain’s trans law was finally approved by the government, allowing anyone 16 and over to change their gender on their ID card with a simple declaration. ALSO READ: Spain approves new laws on menstrual leave, abortion and transgender rights.

However, despite aiming to help trans people, the law does not legally recognise non-binary people or give them the opportunity to select no gender.  

Speck had initially been unsuccessful when bringing the case forward to the courts. The judge in question ruled that Spanish legislation did not admit the official reference to another sex other than that of man or woman, and therefore a German citizen could not appear as X or ‘Indeterminate’ in the police records for foreigners.

Speck then managed to appeal the sentence and the courts finally granted the appeal, saying that ultimately it was confusing because Speck already had ‘Indeterminate’ on their passport and in the German civil registry. They requested ‘uniformity in the information extracted from personal and other data requested from abroad’.  

Speck’s lawyer, Olga Burgos, who specialises in gender equality issues, said the ruling was ‘pioneering’ in Europe.  

The truth is that third non-binary check boxes for official documents are already in place in European countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and Austria, as well as Argentina, India, New Zealand and Canada.

Burgos said that the registry is central and the form will now have to be modified, forcing the police to create a new box in the database. ‘The sentence creates a legal precedent for other people. The breach has been crossed and any other person will have a legitimate right’ to request it, she said.  

File image / Unsplash. (Alexander Grey)

Sign up for the FREE Weekly Newsletter from Spain in English.

Please support Spain in English with a donation.

Click here to get your business activity or services listed on our DIRECTORY.

Click here for further details on how to ADVERTISE with us.

Recent Posts

Spain advances to Euro knockout round after beating defending champions Italy

Sports Desk

Two beluga whales evacuated from war-torn Ukraine to Valencia aquarium

News Desk

Five migrants found dead on boat off Canary Islands, with 68 others rescued

News Desk

Iberian Lynx species rebounds from brink of extinction, due to conservation efforts

News Desk

Formula 1 showcase in central Barcelona, amid protests from environmental groups

News Desk

Tour de France will commence from Barcelona in 2026

Sports Desk

Leave a Comment