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08th Nov 2021

Marks & Spencer introduce staff pronoun badges to be more inclusive

Kieran Galpin

Marks and Spencer

And cue the Karens in 3,2,1…

In a bid to be more inclusive for both staff and customers, employees at Marks & Spencer are being offered the chance to display their pronouns on their name badges.

In theory, this will make it easier for customers to communicate with staff, as there will be no questions around what pronouns to use.

This comes after M&S staff requested for the change in order to be more gender-inclusive.

“Happy #InternationalPronounsDay! I’m so grateful that Marks and Spencer actively encourages us to share our pronouns at work, whether on our name badges or in our email signatures,” wrote M&S Food PR manager David Parke on LinkedIn.

He wrote: “We introduced these new badges a few months ago (a brilliant idea from a colleague that was then implemented by Cleo Thompson and our LGBTQ+ Network) and they’ve already helped start some very necessary conversations around gender identity and non-binary experiences!”

But why are pronouns important?

Our pronouns are often a reflection of ourselves and how we operate in the world. For someone who has never questioned their gender identity, this may seem frivolous – but it’s not really up to those people to decide the validity of another person’s experience.

However more than anything, it is about having respect for another human being.

Sasha Misra, Associate Director of Communications & Campaigns at Stonewall, said: “It’s great to see an increasing number of businesses offering the option of badges with pronouns for staff.

“Creating an inclusive workplace starts with everyday actions, and having pronouns on badges is a simple yet impactful way to make sure LGBTQ+ identities are respected – for employees and customers alike.”

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