WA Senate passes gender-neutral language measure

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Associated Press

Posted on February 8, 2013 at 1:19 PM

Updated Friday, Feb 8 at 7:03 PM

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The Washington state Senate has unanimously approved a measure that is the final installment of a multi-year effort to remove male-dominated language from the state code.

If signed into law, "penmanship" will soon be "handwriting," 'freshmen" will be "first-year students" and "watchmen" will become "security guards."

The National Conference of State Legislatures says about half of all U.S. states have moved toward such gender-neutral language at varying levels, from drafting bills to changing state constitutions.

Florida and Minnesota have already completely revised their laws as Washington state is doing.

The gender-neutral measure was passed Friday in the Senate and goes next to the House.

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