A judge has granted Dwyane Wade’s daughter with a legal name and gender change.
Over the last few years, Wade and his wife, actress Gabrielle Union, have made an active effort to foster a loving and affirming environment for Zaya – who came out as trans in 2019 at the age of 12.
In August, the popular basketball star submitted a petition to a Los Angeles Court to have the 15-year-old’s name and gender legally changed to align with her identity.
The request also revealed that Wade’s ex-wife and Zaya’s mother, Siohvaughn Funches, was not required to give consent per their custody agreement.
However as a courtesy, the NBA star sent a notice of the petition to Zaya’s mother.
Fortunately, a judge finally granted Dwyane and Zaya’s gender-affirming request on 24 February.
With the petition approved, the young role model is now legally recognised as Zaya Malachi Airamis Wade and can also list her gender as female on legal documents moving foward.
While Zaya received support from her father, her mother, unfortunately, attempted to derail her name and gender change.
Back in November, Funches tried to block the petition with her own filing. In the court documents, she accused Dwyane of “pressuring” their daughter for financial gain.
“I have concerns that [Dwyane] may be pressuring our child to move forward with the name and gender change in order to capitalise on the finical opportunities that he has received from companies,” she claimed (per E! News).
Shortly after Funches’ filing, Dwyane released a statement on Instagram slamming her accusations.
“These are serious and harmful allegations that have hurt our children. While none of us are surprised by Siovaughn’s attempt to fight Zaya’s identity… I’m very disappointed that she continuously finds ways of centring herself and HER needs,” he wrote.
“No one in our house would ever force Zaya or any of our children to do anything against their will, much less force an identity on them,” he wrote. This isn’t a game for my family, and definitely, not for Zaya this is her life!”
While Zaya has faced small roadblocks throughout her evolving trans journey, it’s safe to say that she has a solid support system in Dwyane.