That’s because even as the California Fair Housing and Employment Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of one’s sexuality, gender and gender identity, the federal government does not. But military personnel who are transgender went from being told at the tail end of the Obama administration that they could serve openly and have access to psychological and gender-affirming medical care, the Trump administration has effectively ushered in a new “don’t ask, don’t tell” phase for service members who are transgender.
As noted in a report by the non-partisan Palm Center, while this is not a “ban,” neither was “don’t ask, don’t tell” under former President Bill Clinton. Nonetheless, both policies did/will have the impact of systematically removing transgender individuals from the military or, just like DADT, ensure their gender identity is kept silent and invisible.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission still continues to insist (as it was prior to Trump’s election) that LGBT discrimination in employment was a form of gender discrimination under Title VII. That stance has been resisted by the Department of Justice under Trump, though several courts have sided with the EEOC on this. Nonetheless, the transgender military policy formally went into effect this month. Continue reading