Multnomah Co. accepts first time non-binary candidate for member position
PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - For the first time, Multnomah County is accepting a candidate filing for a public position who identifies as “non-binary.”
Venn Wylde is a candidate filing for “precinct committee person” in Multnomah County and doesn’t identify as a man or a woman, preferring the pronouns “they or them.”
The new policy change has a big implication in Multnomah County because it’s the first time Multnomah county has accepted a candidate that identifies as non-binary.
The form for the position only had checkboxes for “precinct committee man” and “committee woman,” so Wylde wrote in a third option and the county accepted a form with a box that simply read “committee person.”
Ultimately meaning voters will see an extra column on the ballot in May for this position.
The current statute said major political parties will elect a committee person of each sex for every 500 voters.
Now, that option is changing, as a third gender non-binary is legally recognized and Wylde is excited to be part of the change.
“I’m one person,” Wylde said. “I can’t speak for all non-binary people, but I like to think that if a young person who doesn’t feel like a man or woman, receives a ballot for the first time, even if they’ve never seen it before, maybe they recognize something they resonate with and say ‘oh that’s who I am, there’s space for me in the world.’”
Wylde has served twice as chair of the Multnomah County Democratic Party and has spent years in a precinct committee position.
On March 1, Wylde received a legal name and sex change to affirm a non-binary gender identity.
The new policy change affects the ballot for the May 15 primary election.
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