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Oxford University Union recommends students use gender-neutral ‘ze’ pronoun

By Will Stroude

Oxford University Union is championing inclusive language by encouraging students to use gender-neutral pronouns, The Times reports.

A student union leaflet was circulated encouraging students to use ‘ze’ instead of ‘she’ or ‘he’. The pronoun is inclusive to non-binary students, and ensures transgender students are not accidentally misgendered.

Purposefully misgendering trans students is already an offence under the Oxford Union’s official code of conduct.

Welcoming the news, transgender Attitude columnist and author Juno Dawson said: “For some trans and non-binary people, pronouns are a very sore spot and it’s encouraging to see an institution taking the needs of all students seriously in a bid to be fully inclusive.”

The move comes during a wider push for trans-inclusivity across Britain. In January, Conservative MP Maria Miller called for Passports to have their gender-markers removed to be more accommodating to trans people.

Miller argued that “as a society and a government we should be looking at ways of trying to strip back talking about gender, and only do that when it’s absolutely necessary.”

Meanwhile, last week Sadiq Khan suggested that TfL would look at introducing gender-neutral announcements at underground stations after a trans woman was told she “doesn’t sound like a ‘miss'”.

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