Transgender Teenage Girl Wins Fight To Wear Makeup In Driver’s License Photo

chase culpepper

17-year-old Chase Culpepper, a transgender girl from South Carolina, has just won the right to wear makeup in her driver’s license photo. But it didn’t happen without a fight.

When Culpepper and her mother originally went to the DMV to get her license last March, she was told she had to take her makeup off to “look male.” The employee explained that DMV rules prohibited applicants from taking their photos in “disguise.”

Culpepper’s mother, Teresa, filed a lawsuit last September that led to a settlement requiring the South Carolina DMV to change its photo policy. The new rules state that an “applicant is not misrepresenting his/her identity when the applicant’s makeup, clothing or accessories do not match traditional expectations of an applicant’s gender.”

DMV employees will also now be required to go through training on the new policy, as well as learn about “professional treatment of transgender and gender non-conforming individuals.”

“This is a step toward equality as it should be,” Teresa Culpepper says. “When we encountered this, we knew something had to be done.”

Chase agreed, saying, “The goal is to make [our lives] equal to anyone else’s life and guarantee basic human rights.”

h/t: Mashable 

Adam Salandra is a writer, performer and host in Los Angeles. When he's not covering the latest in pop culture, you can find him playing with his French Bulldog puppy or hovering over the table of food at any social gathering.