Navy to modernize by dropping job titles

U.S. Navy sailors stand on deck as the guided missile destroyer USS Benfold arrives in port in Qingdao in eastern China's Shandong Province, Monday, Aug. 8, 2016. A U.S. Navy guided missile destroyer arrived in the northern Chinese port of Qingdao on Monday in the first visit by an American warship to the country since Beijing responded angrily to an arbitration panel's ruling that its expansive South China Sea maritime claims had no basis in law. (AP Photo/Borg Wong)

(AP) — The U.S. Navy says it’s modernizing by dropping all 89 of its enlisted sailors’ job titles, many of which end in “man.”

The Navy announced Thursday sailors will no longer be addressed by rating or job title but by rank, a significant cultural shift. The Navy called for a review of the titles in January, shortly after all military jobs were ordered to be opened to women.

A chief yeoman will now simply be called a chief, for example. A junior sailor will still be called a seaman, a naval rank steeped in tradition.

Navy leaders say sailors can be assigned multiple occupational specialty codes, which opens up more jobs in the military and more opportunities when they leave. They say this brings the Navy in line with the other services.

There is a petition circulating to restore the traditional titles.

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