Entitled to inclusion
December 12, 2022
12 December 2022
We were contacted by a Francophone mother whose child identifies as female – which represented a change from the gender assigned to the child at birth.
We were contacted by a Francophone mother whose child identifies as female – which represented a change from the gender assigned to the child at birth. The child wanted a name change so that legal documents would reflect her identity.
The child began the name change process with the Office of the Registrar General. The mother and daughter completed the forms in French together and gathered all the required documents to submit an application.
One of the required documents was a letter from a person who has known the child for at least 12 months, and who is a member of an eligible professional group. The child’s school provided a letter signed by a person with the gender-neutral (school board approved) French title of “Direction” (equivalent to Director or Principal in English).
The Office of the Registrar General refused the child’s application, explaining that “Direction” did not meet its requirements for a sponsor’s profession; only the masculine (“Directeur”) or feminine (“Directrice”) versions were acceptable.
We contacted the Office of the Registrar General, which re-evaluated the entire application on an emergency basis, and accepted the term “Direction.” The application was eventually approved and the Office issued a new certificate to the child, reflecting her name change. In addition to adding the gender-neutral title “Direction” to its list of accepted French titles, the Office committed to reviewing this list to reflect the use of inclusive language.
Learn more about the French Language Services Unit which answers questions and takes complaints about services in French.
Read about how we helped other people in our Selected cases.