No one should be forced to declare their pronouns

Jun 30, 2022 by

by Joanna Williams, spiked:

Halifax is reprimanding its own customers for questioning the cult of the pronoun.

Look closely next time you pop into your local bank, department store or supermarket and you’ll notice an addition to the uniforms of put-upon cashiers and clerks: the pronoun badge. It might be a little rainbow pin displaying ‘he/him/his’ in bold letters, or, far less often, ‘they/them/their’. Or it might be a small rectangle featuring the company logo alongside the employee’s name and pronouns.

Pronoun badges have been around for a few years now, but in that time they have moved from the fringe to the mainstream. They are no longer the preserve of over-enthusiastic Student Union reps or tie-dyed Labour Party conference attendees. They’ve migrated on to the High Street. Pride month is the perfect opportunity for companies lagging behind to catch up, and for those who have long been on the bandwagon to remind the world of their virtue.

Halifax is one of many banks that now expects employees to declare their pronouns. The company’s rainbow-flag adorned Twitter profile informs the world that ‘pronouns matter’ – alongside a picture of poor Gemma (she/her/hers). Natwest has gone one better. There, staff can opt for pronoun badges made of bamboo – killing two birds of environmental awareness and trans-inclusivity with one pin.

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