Senator Casey Asks Social Security Administration to Provide Gender Change Publication

Today Senator Bob Casey asked the Social Security Adminstration to create a publication for gender change:

Dear Commissioner Astrue:

Thank you for your continued leadership of the Social Security Administration (SSA) and demonstrated commitment to improve SSA’S service to the public. l commend your agency for the website’s recognition by the American Customer Satisfaction Index and your maintenance of over 50 informational publications available to the public

I write today today to request your attention to a gap in Social Security’s otherwise extensive public communication. Recently, my office was contacted by a concerned constituent who is in the process of gender transition. My constituent visited her local Social Security field office to inquire how to update her gender data with the SSA. The representative at the window orally explained the established policy as my constituent stood in the public waiting room.

Unfortunately, this interaction proved embarrassing to my constituent who regards her gander status as a private medical matter. She was made uncomfortable by SSA employees who spoke loudly enough that other waiting beneficiaries heard her inquiry. Since that time, my constituent has been contacted by the Office of Public Inquires who graciously provided her the guidance she needed.

As you already know, the SSA has no informational publication on its policy regarding gender data change for Social Security staff to share with inquiring beneficiaries or the public to access online. The language used by Social Security employees in the Programs Operations Manual System (POMS) is technical and is not written for a public audience. Additionally, POMS does not provide Social Security staff the training necessary to discuss the sensitive personal and medical information required to update one’s gender data.

To enhance the Social Security Administration’s current public communication l encourage the Administration to create an easily accessible publication that provides a plain-English explanation of your gender data change policy, and that you make this publication available to beneficiaries in your field offices and to the public online.

I expect that such a publication may reduce the potential for the type of embarrassment my constituent experienced. Additionally, this publication could be an important resource both for employers who compare gender data when verifying their employee’s identity and for treating physicians who need guidance on the type of documentation patients need to comply With SSA’S gender data change policy.

I look forward to working with you to address this issue and to develop a strategy that establishes easily accessible guidance about Social Security’s gender data change policy. Thank you for your time and attention to these concerns.

Sincerely,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.
United States Senator

3 Comments

  1. Anonymous January 11, 2011
  2. Brenda Kay January 11, 2011
  3. Brenda Kay January 11, 2011
  4. Pingback: News items/around on the web: January 20, 2011

Add Comment

img_5800e5bd88d8a
Johns Hopkins Resumes Trans Care
DL-art
The New York Magazine lies to parents about trans children
92
The media is lying about why NC is being sued
91
What the US Attorney General actually said about trans people & fighting NC in court
transphobia5
The Politics of Transphobia
img_579a295a28d15
Is Sadism Popular With TERFs? A Chat With An Ex-Gendercrit
chai
EEOC Commissioner: “Contrary state or local laws provide no defense to an employer that violates Title VII”
85
Study: Trans kid’s gender implicit; govt report condemns conversion therapy
95c
The Gill Foundation & NCTE choose money over trans lives
KrellTitle
In Memory of Terri Williams Moore (1941–1976)
87
[Updated] Predatory publishers and their dupes
84
The NY Times goes concern trolling
95c
The Gill Foundation & NCTE choose money over trans lives
transphobia5
The Politics of Transphobia
86
Fight back: Report Mississippi & North Carolina HATE here!
CitizensForResponsiblePolicy_CreepyGuy
The 2008 Gainesville Bathroom Bill TV Spot Revisited