Manitoba Metis Federation to allow non-binary option on citizenship cards

"We want our citizens to be themselves and not have to hide or be denied their identity," said MMF President David Chartrand.

MMF cabinet unanimously adopted resolution to enable Métis citizens to identify as non-binary

Manitoba Metis Federation President David Chartrand shows his MMF citizenship card in this file photo from 2015. On Friday, the MMF announced its citizens can now select a non-binary option for gender designation on official MMF documents. (CBC)

Manitoba Métis citizens will now be able to select a non-binary option on their citizenship cards, the Manitoba Metis Federation said Friday.

The MMF cabinet unanimously adopted a resolution to allow the change on official documentation, the federation said in a news release Friday.

"We want our citizens to be themselves and not have to hide or be denied their identity," said MMF President David Chartrand in the release.

"We want this resolution to remind all our LGBTQ2+ citizens that you are embraced in our community and your Métis government, and we are proud of who you are."

Métis citizens who already have citizenship or harvester cards with the MMF but would like to change their gender designation will be able to request new, revised and reprinted cards at no cost, the release says.

"The MMF has always encouraged our people to believe in themselves, and be proud to be themselves," Chartrand said in the release.

The move comes after some other provincial and federal agencies have made similar changes. In April, the Manitoba government announced it will allow a non-binary option on birth and death certificates, following a ruling from the Manitoba Human Rights Commission.

In October, Manitoba Public Insurance changed its rules to allow Manitobans to display an X as their gender identifier, or to opt not to display a gender marker.

In the Friday release, Chartrand commended the work of leadership with the Two-Spirit Michif Local, the MMF's first local specifically for Métis LGBTQ2+ individuals.

"The MMF has been on the leading edge of this topic for a number of years among Indigenous peoples," Chartrand said. "All Canadians must have their basic human rights respected."