The Supreme Court will hear a case that can have major implications for gender discrimination cases going forward, especially for certain cases in Texas. According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees on the basis of “race, color, religion, sex, and national origin.” The EEOC holds that “sex” in this definition should include sexual orientation and gender identity. However, some state courts have refused to honor this definition.
At the heart of the Supreme Court case that will be heard in the coming weeks is a question of what exactly “sex” means in the context of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. As views about workplace discrimination have become more sophisticated, some workers have used Title VII when making claims about discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The Supreme Court will look closely at Title VII to determine whether “sex” should be construed to include discrimination against transgender workers and discrimination against others in the LGBTQ community.
State courts have variously interpreted Title VII. Some courts have upheld that “sex” in the law can refer to a person’s sexual orientation, while other state courts have held that “sex” does not include sexual orientation. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission does include sexual orientation in its definition of “sex,” but some state courts have not taken this position. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission also holds that transgender workers are also protected under the law’s definition of “sex.” The problem at the heart of the Supreme Court case involves a differing of opinion about the intention of the law. The Trump administration claims that the spirit of the law was only designed to protect against sex or gender discrimination and was not meant to include discrimination against sexual orientation or gender identity. Moore & Associates are gender discrimination attorneys in Houston, Texas who are closely watching how this Supreme Court case unfolds because it can major implications for certain types of gender discrimination lawsuits in Texas. Texas is one state where there are no specific hate crime laws protecting transgender and gay workers. Title VII is often used to protect these individuals.
Gender Discrimination Law and Transgender Rights in Houston, Texas
Those who have faced discrimination for being transgender have used Title VII to pursue cases against their employers. Under the law, transgender advocates hold that denying a person employment or firing a person because they do not conform to sex stereotypes is a form of discrimination on the basis of sex. However, not all courts have upheld this view. This is why the upcoming Supreme Court case is so important. If the Supreme Court finds that “sex” in Title VII should include transgender individuals (as the EEOC already holds), then courts across the nation will be required to honor this view.
According to the National Center for Transgender Equality, one in four transgender individuals have lost their jobs due to discrimination. Individuals who are transgender are more likely to experience sexual harassment on the job, violations of their privacy while working, and sexual violence. While many states have put laws in place to protect the rights of transgender workers, not all states have done so. In Texas, for example, there is no specific law on the books prohibiting the discrimination of LGBTQ people, and there are no specific protections for transgender individuals under Texas’s hate crime laws. This means that many workers have used Title VII to pursue employers who illegally fired them or failed to hire or promote them for discriminatory reasons. If the Supreme Court rules that transgender individuals are not protected under Title VII, Texas might become another state where there are few, or no protections for transgender individuals.
If you believe you have been denied a job, been fired, or have suffered discrimination or sexual harassment on the job because of your sexual orientation, gender identity, or status as a transgender individual, you may have certain rights under the law. Moore & Associates are gender discrimination lawyers in Houston, Texas who work with individuals of all walks of life to protect their rights when they have suffered discrimination. Contact Moore & Associates today to learn more.
Protecting Worker’s Rights in Houston, Texas
Moore & Associates are gender discrimination lawyers in Houston, Texas who may be able to assist you if you have faced discrimination based on your gender identification or sexual orientation. Our law firm is closely watching the Supreme Court case as it unfolds and may be able to assist you if you have suffered gender discrimination on the job. USAttorneys.com can connect you with Moore & Associates, a gender discrimination lawyer near you today.