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Badge backers are part of Asante’s gender-inclusion journey

These are one of many opportunities for employees to display their preferred pronouns.


Excellence, respect and service are pillars of our values and behavioral standards. Respect of differences and awareness of bias are part of those values, and why the Asante Belonging, Inclusivity, Diversity and Equity (ABIDE) committee is working to normalize gender inclusion into our organization’s culture.

Some Asante staff have completed implicit bias training (or will via Elements training later this year). Implicit bias is an attitude or internalized stereotype that affects our perceptions and actions, often unconsciously. But its effects can result in unequal treatment of those in a minority group.

One minority group that is often subject to implicit bias is the gender-diverse population who identify as nonbinary, transgender or other identification. For these people, outward gender appearance or sex at birth does not align with inward gender identity, a concept not yet widely understood.

For people who are cisgender, gender identity aligns with sex at birth (he/him or she/her, the majority). This means most binary people may never have considered what it feels like to be misgendered or as if they must defend their gender identity. Therefore, the struggles, strengths and vulnerabilities of gender-diverse people are often overlooked or dismissed.

Psychological safety is often low for this minority due to harassment or rejection. This in turn can fuel feelings of isolation, anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation.

badge pronouns

To the majority, it can seem bizarre that anyone would need to fight for their gender identity or prefer the nongendered pronoun they/them. Consider this, however, as an opportunity to show empathy, compassion and inclusion; to cultivate a better sense of safety for this community.

Here are some ways to do this:

  • Preferred-pronoun badge backers will be made available at the in-person Health Care Week festivities May 8–12. You can grab and wear one to affirm gender identities while clarifying or normalizing how to respectfully address one another.
  • You can share your pronouns when ordering business cards, which now have a field for a pronoun choice.
  • You can add your pronouns to your email signatures in accordance with Asante’s Style Guide: lowercase he/him, she/her or they/them.
  • You can add your pronouns to your profile in myHR. Email Human Resources for assistance.
  • Honor gender identities and pronouns in patient charts and when you see them on your colleagues’ badges, email signatures and business cards.
  • Give thought to inclusive language. For example, instead of addressing a large group as “ladies and gentlemen,” try “esteemed colleagues” or “hello, all.”
  • Complete implicit bias training to help you become more aware of your hidden assumptions.

Because it’s expensive to create new badges solely to add preferred pronouns, the badge backers are an effective way to share your pronouns until you qualify for a badge upgrade, at which time the pronouns can be printed directly on your badge.

Guest Services will have the badge backers available for pickup after Health Care Week, as well.

In the meantime, you can learn more about implicit bias here.

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If you need answers for a personal work matter, please contact the author or department directly instead of leaving a comment.

3 Comments. Leave new

  • Joel Carrick
    May 2, 2023 8:09 am

    Thank you to the ABIDE team for this resource, and thank you Kitty for this article explaining the significance of the issue and most importantly WHY it matters to our patients and community. I look forward to displaying my pronouns and encourage all employees to engage and learn how we can continue to RESPECT our patients, and COMMUNITY, and make everyone who enters these doors for care, or to come to work to feel comfortable.

  • How can night shifters get these? I went by the table they were supposed to be at and couldn’t find any.


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