[OpenStack Foundation] OIF bylaws text changes for gender neutrality

Allison Randal allison at lohutok.net
Wed Oct 27 17:13:48 UTC 2021

Hi all,

In the March OIF board meeting, the Diversity & Inclusion working group
proposed some minor changes to the bylaws to use more gender-neutral
language. We've completed legal review on the changes, so we're ready
for broader community review and feedback now, and then will plan for
the OIF board to vote on the changes in the next board meeting in December.

I've attached a PDF with a redline markup of the changes, all comments
are welcome. The changes are relatively simple:

a) "Chairman" changes to "Chair" throughout the document.

b) Consistently uses they/their as the gender-neutral 3rd person
singular pronoun. This replaces all instances of he/his, and all cases
where we previously had incomplete gender neutrality with "his or hers",
"he or she", and other variations that explicitly listed two genders.

While this use of they/their as 3rd person singular isn't universal, it
is very common in modern usage. And, the bylaws already have an explicit
statement that any pronouns should be read as singular/plural as needed:
"6.7 _Pronouns._ All pronouns used in these Bylaws shall be deemed to
refer to the masculine, feminine or neuter, singular or plural, as the
identity of the person or persons may require."

The updates change a few words in protected sections of the bylaws, so
after the board vote, we'll need independent votes from the OpenStack
Technical Committee and Platinum Members, and will include these changes
in the annual Gold Member and Individual Member votes (for Gold and
Individual Directors). So, it'll probably be mid- to late-January before
the changes are fully reviewed and approved.

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