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Spacer Diversity Programming Board at RCC

Diversity Programming Board

Pronouns in RCC Signatures

Why are some RCC employees noting their pronouns in their signatures?

A person’s gender identity is not something that others can always correctly assume. Sometimes, the gender we would label others is actually wrong. This is especially true for transgender and non-binary (those whose gender identity doesn’t fit in either the ‘man’ or ‘woman’ categories) people. When people are misgendered, or called by the wrong pronoun or gendered term (sir, ma’am, mister, ladies, etc.), it can feel very off-putting at the least and even extremely hurtful. We state our pronouns up front, which communicate how we want to be addressed. 

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Does that mean RCC employees who note their pronouns are transgender?

No. Many people choose to state their pronouns in order to normalize the practice. When those who are not transgender or non-binary state their pronouns it makes it safer and easier for trans and non-binary people, as well as others who are not trans, to state theirs, too. Making it commonplace to state our pronouns goes a long way to creating a respectful, inclusive and welcoming educational environment and workplace. That's an RCC value.

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Preferred pronouns are just words and so aren’t that important, right?

Rather than “preferred,” they are simply pronouns because they refer to our identity, who we are, and so aren’t a preference. ‘Preferred’ implies that other pronouns would work just fine, too, which is usually not the case.

Referring to someone correctly is essential to respecting who they are. Even if we don’t yet understand why people use the pronouns they use, or what their gender identity is, the bottom line is we need to respect it. Words matter a lot. 

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Visit pronouns.org for more information on why pronouns matter.