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Old 05-19-2016, 10:50 AM
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Default (New York) City issues new guidelines on transgender pronouns - such as “ze/hir”


City issues new guidelines on transgender pronouns
By Joe Tacopino
May 19, 2016 | 1:38am

The city has issued new guidelines that require employers and landlords to use pronouns such as “ze/hir” to refer to transgender workers and tenants who request them — or be subject to fines as high as $250,000.

The Commission on Human Rights issued the new legal guidelines this week, saying anyone who provides jobs or housing must use individuals’ preferred gender pronouns.

As the legislation points out, some transgender individuals prefer to use pronouns other than he/him/his or she/her/hers.

Examples of less prominent pronouns that some transgender people may choose, according to the city, are: “ze,” which is the third person singular, such as he and she; and “hir,” which is the third person plural, similar to they.

The legal enforcement is in line with the city’s guidance on discrimination based on gender identity or expression.

“Gender expression may not be distinctively male or female and may not conform to traditional gender-based stereotypes assigned to specific gender identities,” the city advises.

An employer or landlord could be considered in violation of the guidelines if there is “intentional or repeated” refusal to use a person’s preferred pronoun after that person has made it clear which one they prefer.

Penalties of up to $250,000 can be imposed for violations that are deemed to be the result of malicious intent.

The idea of using pronouns other than “he/she” has come to light in the past decade as more people are identifying with “non-binary” gender roles, meaning not traditional male/female.

The measure comes a week after the Obama administration issued a decree mandating that every US public-school district allow transgender students to use the bathroom that matches their gender identities.

“There is no room in our schools for discrimination of any kind, including discrimination against transgender students on the basis of their sex,” US Attorney General Loretta Lynch said.
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