The U.S. Department of the Interior sent an internal bulletin to employees in September on “Supporting Gender Transition in the Federal Workplace.”
According to documents published on X by the Heritage Foundation’s Oversight Project, the department sent out guidelines establishing “gender identity” as a protected class under its federal policy. “Gender identity,” according to the Interior Department, is defined as “an individual’s internal sense of being male, female, another gender, no gender, of multiple genders, or fluid in gender.”
“The document states ‘it is not DOI’s intent to be overly protective,'” the Oversight Project reported, “but then goes on to establish policies governing confidentiality and privacy, dress and appearance, names and pronouns, inclusive language, restrooms and related facilities, workplace assignments and duties, recordkeeping, sick and medical leave, and hiring process.”
“An employee’s transition should be treated with as much sensitivity and confidentiality as any other private or highly personal life experiences,” the department memo reads. “Transitioning employees often want as little publicity about their transition as possible.”
The bulletin also outlines codes for “dress and appearance,” encouraging employees to “evaluate, and consider eliminating, where appropriate, gender-specific dress and appearance rules.”
“Once an employee has informed management that they are transitioning, consistent with the employee’s wishes, DOI dress codes should be applied to employees transitioning to a different gender in the same way that they are applied to other employees of that gender, as appropriate,” the policy reads.
Employees with the National Park Service (NPS) apparently violated the agency dress code during an LGBT “pride” celebration this summer when staff held a parade at Yosemite National Park featuring celebrity environmentalist drag queen Pattie Gonia. While the NPS uniform code expressly prohibits employee participation in demonstrations or public events “wherein the wearing of the uniform could be construed as agency support for a particular issue, position, or political party,” staff draped their uniforms in activist apparel anyway.
In October, the drag queen was featured by the department again with a bizarre clip promoting the false narrative that “queer rights are more under attack than ever” alongside Interior Secretary Deb Haaland.
The transgender policy deployed by Interior leadership in September urges employees to “use gender-neutral language in broad communications to avoid assumptions about gender identity.” Examples of “pronouns,” according to the policy, are “they, them, theirs, ze/hir/hirs, ze/zir/zirs, xe/xem/xyrs.” Bathroom use is up to personal discretion, it says, and those who refuse to abide by departmental policies are warned of retribution for “unlawful discrimination.”
“Repeated, intentional refusal to use the employee’s affirming name/gender/pronouns, and/or repeated reference to the employee’s dead name/gender/pronouns by supervisors/managers, or coworkers is contrary to the goal of treating all employees with dignity and respect,” the policy states. “Such intentional conduct could constitute unlawful discrimination.”