Did the city of Atlanta ban the word "women" across all public platforms in favor of the phrase "birthing persons"? No, there's no evidence that's true: Spokespeople for the Atlanta City Council told Lead Stories they had no knowledge of such a ban and that no such legislation has been approved. Additionally, official social media accounts continue at the time of writing to use the word "women" liberally in their posts.
The claim appeared in a post on Instagram on February 15, 2023. The post included a photo and text that read:
THE CITY OF ATLANTA IS MOVING FAST! THE WORD WOMEN IS BANNED ACROSS ALL PUBLIC PLATFORMS! WILL MAKE BIRTHING PERSONS THE WORD TO DESCRIBE A PERSON WITH FEMALE GENITALIA!
This is what the post looked like on Instagram at the time of writing:
(Source: Instagram screenshot taken on Thu Feb 16 12:20:18 2023 UTC)
The post continued, in part:
Also, the city of Atlanta will remove all mentions of women on their public billboards and forums. 'Birthing Person' is the correct term for any human who has a uterus and can give birth to a child. The term 'Women' will only be used to describe Transgender Women who feel bullied and not accepted by the world. New women will feel like they accomplished something in their fight against inequality.
The post did not include any sourcing to substantiate its claim -- and there is no evidence that what it claims is true.
Spokespeople for the Atlanta City Council told Lead Stories they had no knowledge of a ban and that no such legislation has been approved. In an email dated February 16, 2023, Zena Lewis, communications director, wrote:
I don't have any knowledge of a Council member using the term or authoring legislation to ban the word 'woman'.
Council spokesman Michael Ulmer concurred. He wrote:
I don't have any knowledge of this either and no legislation has been approved to establish such a ban.
Significantly, official social media accounts for the city continue at the time of writing to use the word "women" liberally in their posts. Here's one such example, marking Women's History Month:
This #WomensHistoryMonth, Mayor @Andreforatlanta invites you to join us in creating a city-wide culture that values and supports the contributions of women and girls. Let's celebrate #HERstory, address challenges, share #Info4Women, and work together towards an #ATL4Women. pic.twitter.com/VBh52MrVrU-- City of Atlanta, GA (@CityofAtlanta) March 1, 2022
And here's another example, celebrating International Women's Day:
The Council joins the community in celebrating all the remarkable achievements of women in #Atlanta and throughout the world #IWD2022 pic.twitter.com/AxUOzZau87-- Atlanta City Council (@atlcouncil) March 8, 2022
The photo with the claim does not come from Atlanta but from a Toronto organization that works with LGBTQ people.
Lead Stories reached out to the Fulton County Board of Health to ask about the claim. We will update this story, as appropriate, if we receive a response.