Labor conference to debate gender identity options

Official documents could be flooded with a wide range of gender identity options under a radical rainbow plan set to be debated at the Labor Party's upcoming national conference.

Internal federal government research on a proposal in the ALP national policy platform found omnigender, neutrois and demigender were among a list of 33 gender labels that could be used on birth certificates and passports.

The draft platform - to be debated at Labor's National Conference next month - does not suggest which gender labels might be used but would commit Labor to a review of all official documents to make sure that the use of "gender markers … fulfils a genuine and proportionate need".

"Labor will … ensure that all people with intersex variations are able to exercise autonomy regarding sex/gender markers, and obtain identification options that match their sex characteristics and/or gender identities," the platform states.


But a federal Opposition spokeswoman hosed down the suggestion pointing to Labor Leader Bill Shorten's comments that he had no plans to change gender laws relating to official documents.

The government's research cites international examples where often 12 but sometimes up to 33 labels were used.

Health Minister Greg Hunt called on Mr Shorten to detail Labor's plans which he said could be a "very significant potential change" to gender identity laws.

"We (the Morrison government) have a clear commitment to our existing gender identity laws," he told Sky News.

"It appears that they (Labor) are proposing to change those off the back of their national draft policy platform.

"They want to adopt a standard which has a minimum of 12 different forms of identity which people can adopt or nominate," Mr Hunt said.

"On this question of official documentation ours (policies) are set, theirs appear to be subject to potentially a very, very wide range."

Health Minister Greg Hunt called on Mr Shorten to detail Labor’s plans. Picture: Gary Ramage
Health Minister Greg Hunt called on Mr Shorten to detail Labor’s plans. Picture: Gary Ramage

An Opposition spokeswoman said the government had a "weird and out of touch" obsession with culture wars.

"That's a ludicrous claim from the government and 100 per cent wrong," the spokeswoman said.

"Labor will keep focusing on schools and hospitals."

Mr Shorten has previously ruled out backing a push to remove gender from birth certificates. However, last week Tasmanian Labor joined the Greens to pass a new law that gives parents in the state the option of not displaying their baby's sex on a birth certificate.