Marks & Spencer praised for introducing pronoun name badges for its staff

The introduction of optional pronoun name badges for Marks & Spencer employees has been praised.

Monday, 8th November 2021, 11:39 am

After a suggestion from an employee, M&S workers have the option of wearing “whichever combination of pronouns” they choose.

A post on employment platform LinkedIn by the retailer said: “Recently, we introduced pronoun name badges for our colleagues, encouraging as many of them as possible to wear whichever combination of pronouns is right for them.

“An amazing initiative provided by one of our colleagues Morgen Kane to our Suggest to Steve programme, as we continue to build an inclusive future, together.”

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David Parke's pronoun name badge from Marks and Spencer

M&S shared a post from employee David Parke, 28, a food PR manager from Croydon, in which he shared his own pronoun badge which read: “He/Him/His”.

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Mr Parke said: “Giving people the option to display their pronouns at work is really important as it encourages them to show allyship towards trans and non-binary colleagues.

“Many of us already include our pronouns in our email signatures, but when you’re talking to people in person it’s useful to know how they want to be referred to in order to help everyone feel comfortable and avoid any misgendering.

“Right now trans people in the UK are facing more abuse and discrimination than ever before, and so it’s up to all of us to create an inclusive culture and make sure everyone gets the respect they deserve.

“It’s great that M&S is proactively taking these sorts of steps to support and celebrate LGBTQ+ colleagues.”

Sasha Misra, associate director of communications and 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.”

Marks & Spencer started as a penny bazaar in Kirkgate Market in Leeds in 1884, before going on to become one of the country's best loved stores.