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Newsletter | Spring 2022 | South Central MIRECC

DEI Corner: Adding Pronouns in VA Outlook Email and the New ODEI Inclusivity Campaign

By Joshua Hamer, PhD

Outlook Email Pronoun Options

VA now gives every employee the option to add gender pronouns to their VA email accounts. This initiative will help create more inclusive professional spaces and circumvent harmful assumptions about gender identity.

Using correct gender pronouns is important. We often use pronouns when referring to ourselves and others. When speaking of a single person, gender is frequently implied. However, these assumptions can be harmful, especially if they are inaccurate (such as referring to an individual as “her” when the individual self-identifies as “him”). Further, it can be offensive to guess an individual’s pronouns and refer to them using those pronouns if that is not how the person wants to be known. Recognizing and appreciating an individual’s personal pronouns creates a more inclusive work environment. To make the IT service request for Outlook to display your personal pronouns, visit the Personal Pronouns - VA ServicePortal v2 webpage.

ODEI Inclusivity Campaign

VHA’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ODEI) has launched a new inclusivity campaign that will model inclusive habits throughout VHA. Visit the ODEI Inclusivity Campaign SharePoint from a VA computer to learn more about this campaign to build sustainable communication, trust, and teamwork in inclusive VHA environments.

Last updated: May 19, 2022