Mastercard has announced it will start offering a True Name feature, so that transgender and non-binary persons will be able to have their true names on their cards with having to go through a legal name change, according to a release.
The company teamed up with BMO Harris and Superbia Credit Union on the initiative.
"We are thrilled to have the very first issuers of the True Name feature on board, allowing us to propel one of our key values, unconditional acceptance," said Cheryl Guerin, EVP of marketing and communications at Mastercard. "At Mastercard, we strive to cultivate a culture of inclusion that extends both internally and externally. We are continuing to call on the industry to help us ensure that each and every person's financial products can reflect their true identity."
Many in the transgender and non-binary communities face difficulties using their cards. Some are denied service altogether due to the discrepancy between the person and what's on the card.
"Transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming people are consistently placed at greater risk of discrimination, harassment and overall denial of everyday services when their identification does not match their true identity," said Scott Turner Schofield with the GLAAD Media Institute. "The implementation of Mastercard's True Name feature is a crucial step forward in helping to reduce these risks by allowing trans, non-binary and gender non-conforming people to have financial products that accurately reflect who they are. This new feature is a strong example of how companies can respond positively to customer feedback and ensure that their policies and products reflect a commitment to diversity, inclusion and acceptance."
BMO Harris will start implementing the feature for its ATM and debit cards in December, and Superbia Credit Union will use the True Name feature on their Mastercard portfolios next year.
"Breaking down barriers to inclusion requires bold action," said Ernie Johannson, group head for North American personal and U.S. business banking at BMO. "We are bringing True Name to BMO to embrace our cardholders' true identities and empower them to make real financial progress without fear of discrimination."