Today is International Nonbinary People’s Day

International Nonbinary People’s Day was first celebrated on 2012 with an aim to celebrate and focus on nonbinary people, their successes and contributions to the world and their issues. The day takes place during Non-Binary Awareness Week from July 11th to July 16th for 2022.

July 14th was chosen because it falls between International Women’s Day on March 8th and International Men’s Day on November 19th.

Non-binary is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity does not conform to the binary ‘man’ and ‘woman.” Non-binary identities are varies and can include people who identify with some aspects of binary identities, while others reject them entirely.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) also defines what it means to be non-binary:

Non-binary is an identity embraced by some people who do not identify exclusively as a man or a woman. Non-binary people may identify as being both a man and a woman, somewhere in between or as falling completely outside of these categories. While many also identify as transgender, not all non-binary people do. Non-binary can also be used as an umbrella term encompassing identities such as agender, bigender, genderqueer or gender fluid.

HRC Transgender & Non-Binary People 101

According to UCLA’s Williams Institute, about 11% of LGBTQ+ adults age 18 to 60 identify as nonbinary in terms of their gender. Additionally, non-binaries make up a larger proportion of the transgender population than of the cisgender LGBQ adult population.

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Non-Binary Veterans

Earlier this year, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that it began including gender identifiers in its national medical record system to “help VA providers better understand and meet the health care needs of Veterans.”

Options include transgender male, transgender female, non-binary, other, or does not wish to disclose; the identifier populates the new gender identity field.

VA Secretary Denis McDonough issued the following statement at the announcement:

Our goal is to align the department’s policies and procedures with the president’s vision for a more inclusive government. All Veterans, all people, have a basic right to be identified as they define themselves. This is essential for their general well-being and overall health. Knowing the gender identity of transgender and gender diverse Veterans helps us better serve them.

Additionally, the VA stated that, “A person’s gender identity conveys essential information about who they are and may signal experiences of stigma and discrimination that can affect their health. VA health records now display both gender identity and preferred name, so VA staff can address the Veteran appropriately.”

What’s more, the VA’s LGBTQ+ Health Care Program has stepped up its efforts to provide care to ALL Veterans, even developing a fact sheet specifically for non-binary Veterans. The fact sheet provides information on the topics non-binary Veterans should discuss with their VA care provider, such as gender identity, gender expression, pronouns, sexual orientation; gender affirming treatments; hormone therapy; health disparities; and resilience. You can find the fact sheet here.