PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — On Nov. 8, Multnomah County voters will decide if gender-specific pronouns like she, he, his or hers should be removed from the county charter.
Measure 26-230, which was put forward to voters by county commissioners per the Multnomah County Charter Review Committee’s recommendation, will seek to replace these “gender-binary” pronouns with non-gender-specific titles like “the sheriff” or “chair of the board.”
If approved, the change would impact fewer than 10 sentences in the Multnomah County Charter. The measure would also follow similar changes made to county code in 2019.
“In 2019, Multnomah County updated its county code to include a statement that the code is gender inclusive and to replace gender-binary pronouns with gender-neutral pronouns,” the ballot measure states. “Similar changes have not yet been made to the charter.”
No arguments were submitted for or against the measure for the 2022 Oregon general election Voters Pamphlet. However, the local social welfare organization Basic Rights Oregon, which fights for equity for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Oregonians, told KOIN 6 News that it endorses the measure.
“We’re proud to endorse Measure 26-230,” Basic Rights Oregon stated. “It’s a simple way to make Multnomah County’s government more inclusive for all residents, and it recognizes the truth that nonbinary and gender-expansive people call Multnomah County home. County charters should be accurate, clear, and accessible, and replacing gendered language with gender-neutral terms will help achieve those goals.”