Tag: transgender discrimination

DOJ Reverses Course on Title VII Protections for Transgender Persons

  On October 4, 2017, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memorandum announcing the U.S. Justice Department’s (DOJ) new stance that transgender employees aren’t protected from discrimination under federal law. The announcement reflects a reversal from the Obama administration’s interpretation of the law and runs counter to federal court decisions and other federal agencies’ […]

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Oklahoma jury awards transgender worker $1.165 million in bias suit

by Charlie Plumb The courts, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) hold differing views on whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or sexual identity. Nevertheless, on November 20, an Oklahoma City federal court jury awarded a transgender […]

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Deciphering the feds’ changing position on LGBT employment protections under Title VII

by Molly DiBianca In a memo issued on October 4, 2017, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions formally declared that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not prohibit discrimination based on transgender status. The memo directly conflicts with the position of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which has long argued that […]

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Employers in limbo as government entities differ on meaning of laws

by Burton J. Fishman When the U.S. Supreme Court opened its new term on October 2, 2017, the legal world was knocked off its axis. In a rarely seen occurrence, the solicitor general, speaking on behalf of the United States, and the General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) took opposing positions on […]

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Sessions memo changes DOJ position on transgender discrimination

by Tammy Binford U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ announcement changing his department’s position on transgender employment discrimination marks a change in the legal landscape, but it doesn’t alter employer obligations under various state and local laws or the position taken by other federal agencies. In an October 4 memo to U.S. attorneys titled “Revised Treatment […]

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‘No-brainer’ appointment: Lipnic to head EEOC

President Donald Trump has chosen Victoria A. Lipnic to serve as acting chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced on January 25. She will replace Jenny Yang as chair, but Democrats still will retain a majority on the commission for some time. Lipnic’s appointment was “a no-brainer,” says Jonathan Mook, a […]

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U.S. Supreme Court to consider transgender restroom lawsuit

by Ryan B. Frazier During the 1990s, Saturday Night Live, a popular TV sketch comedy show, featured a recurring gender-ambiguous character, Pat. The gag in Pat’s comedy sketches often involved others’ failed attempts to determine the seemingly androgynous character’s gender. The skits played off the then-prevailing view that a person’s gender falls into one of […]

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Transgender bathroom case makes it to Supreme Court

by Rachael L. Loughlin On October 28, 2016, the Supreme Court granted the request of the School Board of Gloucester County to consider whether the Court should overturn a decision of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. The Fourth Circuit ordered the School Board to allow Gavin Grimm, who was born female but identifies as […]

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U.S. Supreme Court puts transgender bathroom case on hold

by Rachael L. Loughlin The case of the Gloucester County, Virginia, transgender high-school student fighting to use the restroom that matches his gender identity has been making its way through the federal court system for more than a year. Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court weighed in on the matter, adding yet another twist to the high-profile […]

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4th Circuit ruling favors transgender student

by Rachael Luzietti After the Norfolk federal district court refused to order the Gloucester County School Board to grant the student’s request, he appealed to the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals (whose rulings apply to all Virginia employers). Recently, the appeals court reversed the district court’s decision and issued a ruling favorable to the […]

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