Following the inauguration of the 46th president of the United States, the White House’s official website immediately showed changes that advocacy groups are calling accessible and inclusive.
The site for the first time ever, now includes gender-inclusive pronouns and prefixes in its contact form such as “they/them,” the gender-neutral “Mx.” alongside “Mr.” and “Ms.” and “other” for Americans to self-declare how they see fit.
GLAAD, a national advocacy group for the LGBTQ community says four years after the Trump administration erased all mentions of LGBTQ people from the White House website, the Biden administration has quickly embraced inclusion.
“On day one, the Biden administration has taken immediate steps to include trans, nonbinary and gender nonconforming people in the conversation,” said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “Pronouns matter, and adding inclusive pronouns to a contact form is more than just a demonstration of allyship. Research has shown that recognition and respect of our pronouns can make all the difference for our health and well-being — especially when it comes to LGBTQ youth.”
GLAAD cites research from the Trevor Project, a nonprofit that focuses on suicide prevention for LGBTQ youth on the importance of people’s chosen pronouns being acknowledged.
“Respecting pronouns is part of creating a supportive and accepting environment, which impacts well-being and reduces suicide risk.”
The Biden administration has also relaunched the White House’s Spanish-language website, “La Casa Blanca” after former president Trump got rid of it during his one-term presidency.
“This commitment to accessibility for all begins with this site and our efforts to ensure all functionality and all content is accessible to all Americans,” the White House said in a statement.
Groups like the Hispanic Federation are applauding President Biden for speedy actions to bolster Spanish speakers and immigrants.
“We were heartened that on his first day in office, President Biden signed a series of Executive Orders that address climate change, safeguard LGBTQ rights, strengthen DACA, tackle the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, and honor our history as a nation open to all immigrants,” said the Hispanic Federation in a statement. “This is the sort of leadership that has been sorely missing in Washington for the last four years and we welcome the President’s bold start to his term in office.”
The organization also praised the vice presidency of Kamala Harris — saying it signals progress for all immigrants.
“As a woman of color and the daughter of immigrants, Vice President Harris is a powerful and needed example that the United States is a country that draws its greatest strength from its diversity of backgrounds and experiences.”