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There are no more firemen in Berkeley as the city removes gender from its city code

Jenni Avins
There are no more firemen in Berkeley as the city removes gender from its city code

The city council of Berkeley, California, is making moves to rid its city code of gendered terms, including the pronouns “he” and “she.” The proposed changes would replace those pronouns with the singular “they” in city code, and also offer optional fields for personal gender pronouns on city forms. The city council adopted the first reading of the ordinance Tuesday, according to NBC News, and will review it again next week. It may seem just like a typically progressive move from one of California’s crunchiest towns—”They even changed the name of the local Hooters to ‘torsos,'” joked Seth Meyers—but the eradication of the code’s largely masculine language is one more step toward a mainstreaming of the idea that gender is not necessarily binary, or static, and that public spaces should be welcoming and inclusive to all.