Landmark Ruling Protects LGBTQ Workers

On Behalf of | Jun 25, 2020 | Firm News |

Residents of California might want to know more about the recent landmark ruling by the Supreme Court. Federal civil rights laws offer protection to lesbian, gay and transgender workers as stated by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.

The Trump administration argued that discrimination based on sex did not mean gender identity and sexual orientation. However, according to CNN, Judge Neil Gorsuch wrote, “An employer who fires an individual for being homosexual or transgender fires that person for traits or actions it would not have questioned in members of a different sex. Sex plays a necessary and undisguisable role in the decision, exactly what Title VII forbids.”

One of the rulings involved Aimee Stephens, a transgender woman who told her co-workers about her gender identity, something she had struggled with her whole life. She was soon fired from her position as director of a funeral home. Her former boss, who did not use feminine pronouns to refer to Stephens, testified that she was fired because she was “no longer going to represent himself as a man.”

According to UCLA’s Williams Institute, the LGBTQ community is made up of approximately a million workers who identify as transgender and 7.1 million workers who identify as lesbian, gay and bisexual. Although the decision refers to workers and employees, it opens doors to other challenges relating to sexual orientation.

Those who feel they may have encountered discrimination regarding their employment because of sexual orientation should consult with an attorney. A lawyer may be able to help a person who has been discriminated against because of gender identity or sexual orientation. A situation where an LGBTQ worker was overlooked for a promotion might be discrimination. An agreeable outcome for all is often the result of working with a lawyer versed in employment law.