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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Advocate: Title VII Awakening - where trans Americans are pioneering a whole new area of law

From The Advocate:

 Title VII Awakening 

While the advancement of transgender Americans has sometimes been viewed as dependent upon the success of the broader LGBT movement, workplace protections are one place where trans Americans are pioneering a whole new area of the law—and lesbians, gays, and bisexuals appear to be following their lead.


In a series of court decisions over the past couple of decades, the definition of what constitutes “sex discrimination” under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 has broadened considerably to include discrimination against transgender employees. But a new development in a case earlier this year could foretell a further evolution of Title VII to cover LGB workers as well.

 Since 2004, several federal courts have ruled in favor of trans plaintiffs making discrimination claims, but the first court of appeals case to unequivocally equate anti-trans bias with sex discrimination was Glenn v. Brumby. The case was brought by Lambda Legal on behalf of Vandy Beth Glenn, who was fired from her job as a legislative editor for the Georgia General Assembly based on her intent to transition. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, which covers Florida, Georgia, and Alabama, ruled in Glenn’s favor in December 2011, restoring her to her original post at the state legislature.

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