New Gender Neutral Ontario Health Cards Make It Harder To Get A Passport

Ontario's decision to go gender neutral on its health cards and driver's licences is making it more difficult to get a passport — because the province didn't consult the federal government before making the switch.

Hamilton native Rachael Bestard found that out the hard way when she applied for a passport this week.

Bestard, 24, is going to Europe in October, she hopes, which would be her first trip out of the country since she was a kid. That's when she last had a passport.

She went through the usual motions — getting guarantor signatures, passport photos, and finding her birth certificate. The other required documentation is government-issue photo ID, which includes her name, date of birth and sex.

Bestard doesn't have a driver's licence, so she planned to use her Ontario Health Card.

She applied for a new one on June 24, but when it arrived, the card didn't have her sex on it — and because of that, her passport application was rejected.

"I was quite surprised. It feels a little absurd," she told CBC News.

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