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What is the Impact on Indiana Company That Says No To Pronouns?

Jeff Jones, CEO of Solutions Tree in Bloomington, sent an email to its employees instructing them not to use pronouns in their email signatures. Jones said, "How someone wants to be identified has nothing to do with advancing the work of the authors. It has to do with the individual, just like race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or even causes, movements, or societal changes they are interested in. Nothing to do with business.”

The Herald-Times reported the story and interviewed an employee who quit after receiving the email. The non-binary employee said they had been able to use their pronouns at work openly until the email. They said normalizing the sharing of pronouns helps people feel included. They had conversations with upper management about prioritizing pronouns during their employment. They discussed how it protects individuals whose identities are more vulnerable. The employee did not feel comfortable disclosing their non-binary identity until after they resigned. At least one other employee has left the company since the issuance of the email, according to the paper. That employee said they took a pay cut rather than jeopardize their mental health by remaining at the company, noting that upper management did not make them feel they would be heard. Even in the liberal college town, the paper reports that many marginalized community members believe their workplaces are not as diverse and inclusive as they were led to believe. In his email, Jones said the company email should be focused on work and not bringing attention to individuals. Jones declined to comment to the Herald-Times. The local Chamber of Commerce hosted a series of free diversity, equity, and inclusion training sessions as part of its "corporate responsibility to better the community."