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December 21, 2018

Subject: Legislative Counsel Gender-Inclusive Drafting Policy

The Capitol LGBTQ Association congratulates the California State Legislature and the
Office of Legislative Counsel for taking another step towards fostering a more inclusive
workplace and recognizing the diversity of the State of California. As directed by
Assembly Concurrent Resolution 260, the Office of Legislative Counsel has adopted
revisions to its drafting rules to ensure that new legislation and amendments to existing
statutes are drafted using inclusive, gender-neutral language and avoiding the use of
gendered pronouns. This new drafting policy is effective for the upcoming 2019-20
legislative session.

In a membership survey earlier this year, the Association collected feedback from
LGBTQ staff about issues they found important and shared it with Senate President pro
Tem Toni Atkins and Assembly Rules Chair Ken Cooley. One of the issues highlighted
was to ensure state law is inclusive of nonbinary, transgender, and gender
nonconforming people. We commend the efforts of Senate President pro Tem Toni
Atkins’ office, Assembly Rules Chair Ken Cooley’s office, and the California Legislative
LGBT Caucus in adopting this drafting policy change and being responsive to our

Earlier this month, the California State Senate revised its Standing Rules to remove
binary and exclusionary language regarding dress code on the Senate Floor. In
addition, the California State Senate and Assembly have recently provided the option to
include pronouns on legislative business cards. We hope that these rule changes
encourage a more welcoming environment for nonbinary, transgender, and gender
nonconforming individuals in California’s State Capitol, and that this drafting policy
makes California’s laws truly inclusive of all Californians.


The Capitol LGBTQ Association Board of Directors