US should apply LGBT+ Supreme Court decision to all types of sex discrimination
LGBT+ rights groups are asking the US attorney general to start enforcing the Supreme Court’s decision protecting LGBT+ employees from discrimination.
They say the Department of Justice should get federal agencies to remove guidance that doesn’t reflect the justices’ ruling. That could apply to many more areas than just employment rights. And it could undermine Trump’s own rollbacks of LGBT+ rights.
The historic victory on 15 June saw the US Supreme Court rule that federal anti-discrimination law protects LGBT+ workers. The court’s logic was that it was impossible to discriminate against a person’s sexuality or gender identity without that discrimination being based on sex.
Now in a letter to Attorney General William Barr, campaigners say his department should ‘coordinate implementation’ of the court’s ruling.
The letter states:
‘The Department of Justice is not only appropriately positioned to coordinate implementation of the Bostock decision across the federal government, but has historically undertaken this role.
‘It is imperative that the Department accept this responsibility and ensure that enforcement of this decision, as to the definition of sex discrimination through federal civil rights laws and regulations, is uniform across the federal government.’
Supreme Court’s historic ruling for LGBT+ workers
The US Supreme Court’s decision last month covered three individual cases where employers discriminated against LGBT+ workers.
All three were about Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The justices had to decide whether it prevented discrimination on the basis of sexuality or gender identity in the workplace.
Bostock v Clayton County and Altitude Express v Zarda were about gay workers. Meanwhile RG & GR Harris Funeral Homes v EEOC was about a transgender employee.
The justices ruled in favor of all three LGBT+ workers. Attorneys now refer to the judgment as the ‘Bostock decision’.
However, lawyers from President Donald Trump’s administration had sided with the employers.
‘Greater equality across so many critical areas’
Now LGBT+ campaigners are keen for the federal government to impose the rules – despite that court defeat.
That’s because the logic of the Supreme Court’s Title VII decision could well have far wider implications. Indeed, it may cover areas like education, housing and welfare.
The letter concludes: ‘We now look forward to confirming the ways that the Supreme Court’s recent ruling will lead to greater equality across so many critical areas.’
In particular, campaigners are suing the government for after it decided in June to roll back protections for LGBT+ patients under the Affordable Care Act.
If Trump remains in power, it is likely that a series of legal actions will seek to reverse these rollbacks.
14 of the US’s leading LGBT+ and civil rights organizations have signed the letter to Barr.
They are the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, National Women’s Law Center, Center for American Progress, Family Equality, Freedom for All Americans, GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders (GLAD), National Center for Lesbian Rights, National Center for Transgender Equality, National LGBTQ Task Force, PFLAG National
SAGE: Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders and Transgender Law Center.
Published on GayStarNews Read the original article
Author: Tris Reid-Smith