CVS has issued 'gender transition guidelines' which put employees on notice that people must be addressed by their preferred pronouns and names, and that they may use whichever restroom or locker room they wish, whether or not they identify as transgender, Fox Business reports.
According to the guidelines, employees are notified that they may be entitled to medial leave "under the Family and Medical Leave Act, state law, and/or CVS Health policy," while transitioning employees are encouraged to tell their immediate supervisor about their decision so that the company "can provide support and to make your transition as smooth as possible."
"You may also wish to have appropriate medical care to support your transition, including treatments such as hormone replacement therapy and/or gender confirmation surgery," the guide continues.
"During and after the transition has occurred, CVS Health encourages you to continue to partner with your Leader and your Advice & Counsel representative, and to immediately report any issues that you might have with your employment, your work environment, and/or your Leader, co-workers, clients, and customers."
In a section titled, "Guidelines for Supporting a Colleague who is Transitioning," the guide encourages employees to be an ally by asking colleagues to let them know if they say or do anything that makes them uncomfortable. It also urges employees to not make assumptions about a person's gender.
It says employees should become an ally to make a positive impact on a co-worker's life, become an inclusive leader, champion and celebrate all aspects of diversity and to show compliance with the CVS Health Equal Employment, Affirmative Action, AntiDiscrimination, Anti-Harassment, and Anti-Retaliation Policy. -Fox Business
According to the company's Affirmative Action, AntiDiscrimination, Anti-Harassment, and Anti-Retaliation Policy, the company is "committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity and takes affirmative action to recruit, hire, employ, develop, compensate, promote and advance in employment based on an individual’s job-related qualifications, abilities, and job performance," and prohibits discrimination and harassment.
Transgender CVS employees are encouraged to include their preferred pronouns in email signatures, and let people know during meeting introductions. After this is done, co-workers are instructed not to refer to the individual by other pronouns or their previous name.
"People use different terms to refer to themselves, but some terms are universally considered disrespectful and violate CVS’s policy against discrimination and harassment," states the guide. "Terms like transgender, trans-male/trans-female, non-binary or ‘male’ or ‘female’ should be used."
What's more, according to company policy, all workers "should determine the most appropriate" bathroom and locker room based on their gender identity.
"Any colleague, customer, or patient—transgender or otherwise--may choose to use the restroom and/or locker room that is appropriate to the gender they identify with," according to the guide, which adds that transgender employees have "Any colleague, customer, or patient—transgender or otherwise--may choose to use the restroom and/or locker room that is appropriate to the gender they identify with."