Many individuals of transgender and non-binary experience will no longer be “deadnamed” by the plastic in their wallets: Mastercard is rolling out a “True Name” program in which cardholders can replace their debit, credit, and prepaid cards with ones bearing the name they actually use, and a legal name change isn’t even required.
Experts told The Washington Post the program is a first for the financial services industry, and it solves a problem faced by many cardholders. In a 2015 National Center for Transgender Equality survey, 32 percent of trans and non-binary respondents “who have shown an ID with a name or gender that did not match their gender presentation were verbally harassed, denied benefits or service, asked to leave, or assaulted.”
The company’s goal is to have the True Name program in place with its issuing banks by 2020. “We are allies of the LGBTQIA+ community, which means if we see a need or if this community is not being served in the most inclusive way, we want to be a force for change to help address and alleviate unnecessary pain points,” Randall Tucker, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for Mastercard, said in a press release. “This translates not only for our Mastercard employee community but for our cardholders and the communities in which we operate more broadly. Our vision is that every card should be for everyone.”
“I didn’t have to convince anyone to the necessity of this,” Scott Turner Schofield, a performer with GLAAD’s Transgender Media Program who was involved in True Name discussions, told the Post. “They were completely on board and recognized this as a barrier of access to people, as unfair, and they just fixed it. That’s the kind of corporate leadership we really want to see.”