Articles Tagged with LGBT discrimination

Protection from workplace discrimination has expanded ten-fold in the last 70 year, reflective of our cultural progress within that time. Women, people of color, those of all faiths, ages and nationalities – are shielded under state and federal statutes from adverse employment action on these bases. LGBT discrimination attorney

Yet even as this year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals still are entitled to the fewest employment protections under the law. California, at least, is known as one of if not the most LGBT-friendly states for workers whose sexuality or gender identity does not adhere to “traditional” norms.

The California Fair Housing and Employment Act expressly protects workers and applicants on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. Federal law, unfortunately, does not, and many states don’t have the supplemental protections that California enjoys.

That doesn’t mean of course that workers still don’t face these challenges, but with an experienced LGBT employment discrimination attorney to help fight back, your odds of success are much more favorable. Continue reading

Under the direction of new U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the Department of Justice has filed papers in court arguing federal civil rights law doesn’t provide civil rights protections against discrimination for employees on the basis of sexual orientation. This is in stark contrast to the directives of President Barack Obama’s administration. employment discrimination

The move was an unusual one, wherein the department asserted its authority in a federal case pending in New York. It involves a basically private dispute between a worker in New York and his employer over the issue of gay rights and LGBTQ discrimination.

In a friend-of-the-court brief, the Justice Department wrote that the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which prohibits workplace discrimination on the basis of religion, gender, national origin, race and color, does not, as a matter of law, protect those based on sexual orientation. The DOJ wrote that this is an issue that has “been settled for decades,” and that any effort to amend or alter the scope of Title VII needs to be directed to members of Congress, rather than the courts.  Continue reading

According to a recent news article from Society for Human Resource Management, an employee in California has filed a lawsuit against his former employer claiming he was fired for being “too gay.”  He was working in executive management for the company prior to being terminated, according to his complaint.

Employment LawyerIn his complaint, employee claimed his was openly gay when he was hired in 1997.  He worked for the company for 10 years in various management jobs. In 2007, he was given a new job as the manager for diversity and inclusion.  This was not only a new job for him, but a newly created position within the company. Continue reading

Over the last four years, the number of gender-based discrimination charges filed by individuals for violation of LGBT rights has increased substantially. That’s according to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which just released a new report on the issue. holding hands

The data shows that in fiscal year 2016, the EEOC received nearly 1,770 claims of discrimination from LGBT persons, and resolved nearly 1,650 – which are record high numbers in both categories.

Those figures are part of a larger year-end litigation and enforcement data release from last year. Herein, the agency breaks down all the different types of claims it receives and how those claims were resolved. The agency received more than 91,500 charges of workplace discrimination last year – which is the second annual increase in the number of charges. A total of 97,443 claims were resolved (some of those had been filed prior to fiscal year 2016), and a total of $482 million collected for victims of workplace discrimination in both the private and government sectors.  Continue reading

A teacher who is gay has filed an employment lawsuit against his former employer, a Roman Catholic high school, which he alleges terminated his employment because he announced his wedding to another man.professional

The LGBT employment discrimination lawsuit alleges the Charlotte Catholic High School in North Carolina ran afoul of federal employment law in firing him from his substitute teaching position three years ago, following his revelation of his wedding to another man in a Facebook post. The statute doesn’t reference any state law, but it does come amid a bigger fight over a law in that state that limits protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

According to the Associated Press, plaintiff taught full-time English and drama at the school for more than 10 years and even earned the “Teacher of the Year” title back in 2012. Afterward, he transitioned into a less demanding role as a regular substitute teacher, and usually worked more than 12 weeks in a year. Then, in the fall of 2014, he posted details of his upcoming wedding to another man. Several weeks later, seemingly without warning, he was informed by the school’s assistant principal that he was no longer welcome back to continue teaching.  Continue reading

A former employee of President-Elect Donald J. Trump’s golf club in New Jersey is suing the mogul and his company for what he calls “extreme” LGBT harassment and discrimination. golfing

According to The Advocate, plaintiff worked in maintenance at New Jersey’s Trump National Golf Club two years ago. There he alleges his co-workers frequently used highly-offensive, anti-gay slurs against him in both English and Spanish. One of his fellow workers allegedly threw a rock at his head, which resulted in his needing treatment at a local hospital.

The lawsuit was filed in state court specifically alleges sexual orientation harassment, discrimination based on his sexual orientation, hostile work environment and unlawful retaliation. He also filed claims for assault and battery. He asserts his immediate supervisor directly observed his mistreatment, and yet did nothing to intervene. After the rock-throwing incident, plaintiff filed a formal complaint with his managers. At that time, his supervisor assured him the issue would be “dealt with.” However, when plaintiff went back to the manager to get further information for a police report he planned to file against his attacker, the manager refused to cooperate. Plaintiff then informed the manger he did not feel physically safe going to work after he was attacked by a co-worker, at which point he was promptly fired.  Continue reading

The U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has found that sexual orientation is not a protected class under Title VII, which means it’s now in the hands of Congress to take action to change existing law if LGBTQ employees are going to be allowed the right to sue. The other alternative would be for the U.S. Supreme Court to take on this case or one similar and decide differently. sadness

In the Indian case of Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College, the court noted that this was not the first time it had been asked to consider whether Title IV of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 shields workers and provides an avenue for dispute resolution (usually stemming from claims of discrimination against members of the LGBTQ community). However, the court noted that in this case, the court was deciding the matter “in the shadow of criticism from the EEOC,” which alleged the 7th Circuit and others have continued to reflexively declare sexual orientation is not protected under Title VII/

The court noted the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had questioned the court’s acceptance of cases born of gender non-conformity discrimination, even as it rejected sexual orientation discrimination cases. Even in the face of this criticism, however, the federal appeals court held once again that because the claim was solely for discrimination based on sexual orientation, it was beyond the scope of the statute.  Continue reading

Although sexual identity is not explicitly protected on the federal level for public employees, California law does provide protection, as do some local-level policies. walkingaway

LGBT employees have the right to enjoy a harassment-free, discrimination-free work environment.

In the recent case of Flood v. Bank of Am. Corp., before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, an employee asserted she received disparate treatment because of her bisexuality. She stopped reporting to work for this reason, and was subsequently fired. She sued under a state human rights law (this occurred in Maine), and the bank was granted summary judgment by the district court. However, the federal appeals court reversed on the portions of her claim pertaining to hostile work environment and wrongful termination, finding a reasonable jury could find the bank’s reason for firing the worker was pretextual and was actually due to her bisexuality. That means the plaintiff now gets a crack at a trial.

A federal push to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees is quickly gaining steam among lawmakers, with all but two Democrats in the Senate signing on to co-sponsor the legislation. twobusinessmen

Our Costa Mesa LBGT discrimination attorneys know that in California, it is illegal to discriminate a worker or potential worker on the basis of one’s sexual orientation or gender identity. We are fortunate to have one of the most comprehensive protection laws in the country.

However, while federal employment law protects workers from discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, religion, age, disability or nationality, it does not shield workers who face adverse employment action as a result of their LGBT status. This is a gaping hole in terms of worker protections, and one that legislators appear finally poised to close.