German politician wants officials to include gender in their e-mails


Central Europe


Photo Unsplash, Sigmund

All officials should include their gender in their signature under their e-mails to prevent misidentification, Green senator Daniel Wesener from Germany argues. His idea led to many critiques.

To prevent wrong salutations when addressing someone in an e-mail, all public employees should include their gender in their e-mail signature, Daniel Wesener argued last month. That is reported by BZ last week. Wesener wrote in a letter to public officials that "we cannot always infer a person's gender from their first name, so it makes sense to state their preferred pronoun and preferred form of address in their own e-mail signature."

According to Junge Freiheit, the Senator's statement is based on the law on general, equal treatment. That legislation required employers to protect their employees against discrimination in the workplace and was established especially for transgender, inter-gender or non-binary people.

The right-wing party AfD is not amused by Wesener's statement. Its leader, Kristin Blinker, calls it utterly unacceptable that "state employees are being forced to make a gender commitment by this instruction." She is afraid that employees feel obliged to add their gender to their signature, worrying that they might lose chances in their careers if they refuse to.



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