New Name Tags
You will notice something new in the coming weeks: Pronouns on nametags.
We enocurage staff to add pronouns to their name tags
When gender-nonconforming, questioning, queer, non-binary, and transgender folks see pronouns on nametags, it lets everyone know that you’re more likely to respect everyone’s pronouns. By putting your pronouns on your name tag, email signature, and social media, you’re signaling how you want to be addressed. In our efforts towards Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, the proper and respectful use of pronouns, makes the Co-op more inclusive and welcoming for everyone regardless of their gender identity.
The result? Making the Co-op a more welcoming and safe space for everyone.
Where to start as an Ally
People interpret and express their gender identity differently, start by educating yourself and practicing the correct pronouns for people who you know. Read our Inclusivity at the Co-op Blog and our Racism and Bigotry in Davis Blog, although the focus is race this blog touches on bigotry towards the LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and/or Questioning, Intersex, and Asexual) community. It is important to not assume someone’s gender identity or pronouns based on of their appearance, look to nametags or email signatures for correct pronoun use. When meeting new people, you can take it upon yourself to state your pronouns (regardless of your gender identity), this makes the space more comfortable and shows obvious respect and support. Read this blog on how to be more inclusive in your daily life.
Some Helpful Definitions
These definitions are created with the help of the Oxford English dictionary and the cis-gendered Author of this blog. It is important to make clear that this is not a complete set of gender identity definitions, I have only covered some of the broader identities.
Cis-gendered people follow pronouns and gender expression in how it relates to birth sex.
Gender-nonconforming is “denoting or relating to a person whose behavior or appearance does not conform to prevailing cultural and social expectations about what is appropriate to their gender.”
Questioning is referring to people who are still discovering what their gender identity is, and may choose a variety of different pronouns to describe themselves until they understand themselves better.
Non-binary or genderqueer people are neither male nor female, these are umbrella terms for gender identities that are outside the gender binary.
Transgender people are those whose personal identity and gender does not correspond with their birth sex.
All staff are encouraged to add pronouns to their name tags, but are given the option to opt out by speaking with the HR or General Managers.
Staff and shoppers are required to be respectful of people’s (shoppers, employees, vendors, community members, etc.) pronouns and gender-expression whether or not they have pronouns displayed on name tags.
Pronouns are becoming the norm
Instagram and LinkedIn have added a new feature to their account settings: a designated place to add pronouns. Many folks have been adding their pronouns to their profiles in recent years, and social media platforms are beginning to show their obvious support for the LGBTQIA+ community and their allies.
We have followed in their footsteps. We offer the space and acceptance for people of all gender identities while giving the option for folks to opt out. To be truly inclusive, we must respect all people’s opinions and feelings, as long as they are not being used to discriminate. That is why, while we offer staff the option to opt out, we require staff and community members to be respectful.
No one expects perfection
We are all human and we all make mistakes. No one expects perfection, but everyone is worthy and deserves respect. It is important when it comes to pronouns to not put any pressure on the person whose pronouns you got wrong. The best thing to do if you make a mistake is to immediately correct yourself and move on. Instead of ” he, I’m sorry, they” try “he, excuse me, they” or “he…they [continue sentence]”. This redirects the mistake on you and takes pressure off of the person you are talking too, to say “It’s okay”.
Have questions about gender-nonconformity and trans-folks, head to jeffreymarsh.com/ or find them on instagram @thejeffreymarsh. They have a IGTV series on trans 101 for cisgender people.