Landmark Federal Employment Decision Finds Sexual Orientation Discrimination Illegal Under Title VII
Mazzoni Center celebrates the work of Greg Nevins of Lambda Legal and the many others who have worked for years to bring about Tuesday's historic result at the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. This decision states clearly that discrimination based on sexual orientation is sex discrimination. That means that lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer – and straight – people are already protected under Title VII, the federal workplace anti-discrimination law.
Other decisions have recognized that this same law already protects trans/gnc people against discrimination based on gender identity. Although the 7th Circuit does not include Pennsylvania, a federal court in Pennsylvania reached the same conclusion earlier this year.
Mazzoni Center’s Legal Director, Thomas W. Ude, Jr. said, “This is a terrific outcome, and this decision aligns with other federal court and agency decisions. But while it assures people that they have a remedy, we need to keep working hard – in court, and in the legislatures of DC and Harrisburg – for federal and state laws that explicitly protect LGBTQ people against discrimination. Our community wants and needs jobs more than compensation after the fact. That won’t happen until our rights are clear enough to be enforceable even without a smart lawyer. People are still facing discrimination every day. But what this does mean is that if you face discrimination because of your LGBTQ identity, you do have rights. To understand and enforce those rights, please contact us at Mazzoni Legal Services, or call an attorney in your area with experience in handling discrimination cases."