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“Unique” Family Wins Federal Housing Bias Suit

“Unique” Family Wins Federal Housing Bias Suit

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | A federal district judge in Colorado granted summary judgment on April 5 under the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) to a couple – two women, one of them transgender – turned down for renting either of two available rental residences by a landlord who cited their “unique relationship.” Judge Raymond P. […]

What the Seventh Circuit Said About Sexual Orientation Discrimination

What the Seventh Circuit Said About Sexual Orientation Discrimination

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | The full bench of the US Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, based in Chicago, substantially advanced the cause of gay rights on April 4, finding that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation. Title VII applies generally to private sector employers with […]

Trump Action on Transgender Students Carries Contradictions

Trump Action on Transgender Students Carries Contradictions

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | The Trump administration, in line with statements that candidate Donald Trump made opining that the issue of restroom and locker room access by transgender students should be left up to state and local officials, issued a letter to all the nation’s school districts on February 22 withdrawing two letters issued […]

Trans Employee Can Sue If Surgery Benefits Refused

Trans Employee Can Sue If Surgery Benefits Refused

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | Does a transgender employee who seeks coverage under her employer’s benefit plans for breast augmentation surgery have a legal remedy if her claims are denied? US District Judge Sidney A. Fitzwater ruled on January 13 that a trans woman employed by L-3 Communications Integrated Systems may pursue a sex discrimination […]

Gay Employment Bias Goes Before Full Seventh Circuit    

Gay Employment Bias Goes Before Full Seventh Circuit    

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | The full Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals bench has heard oral argument on the question of whether sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace is illegal as sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The November 30 hearing, in Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College, marked […]

Another Federal Judge: Gay Plaintiff Can Claim Sex Discrimination

Another Federal Judge: Gay Plaintiff Can Claim Sex Discrimination

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | One of the nation’s most senior federal trial judges, 92-year-old Warren W. Eginton of Connecticut, rejected an employer’s motion to dismiss a sex discrimination claim brought by an openly gay employee under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. In a November 17 ruling, Eginton, appointed by Jimmy Carter […]

Transgender Funeral Director’s Firing Upheld

Transgender Funeral Director’s Firing Upheld

  BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | A federal judge in Michigan has ruled that a funeral home that discharged a transgender funeral director because of her intention to dress according to the employer’s dress code for women was not liable for sex discrimination under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The August 18 ruling […]

For the First Time, Wide-Ranging LGBT Equality Bill Reaches Congress

For the First Time, Wide-Ranging LGBT Equality Bill Reaches Congress

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | The Equality Act, introduced by Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Representative David Cicilline of Rhode Island on July 23, is the first truly comprehensive federal measure attempting to provide legal equality for LGBT people in the United States. It goes far beyond all prior bills on this topic, because no […]

EEOC Says Gays Protected Against Employment Discrimination    

EEOC Says Gays Protected Against Employment Discrimination    

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | In a complete turnaround, the federal agency that enforces Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act has, for the first time, ruled the federal ban on employment discrimination because of sex includes discrimination against somebody because they are gay, lesbian, or bisexual. The July 15 holding by Equal Employment Opportunity […]

Federal Court Applies Labor Relations Statute to Trans Job Claim    

Federal Court Applies Labor Relations Statute to Trans Job Claim    

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD | A unanimous three-judge panel of the Manhattan-based US Second Circuit Court of Appeals has revived a transgender man’s federal employment discrimination lawsuit, which was earlier dismissed by Southern District of New York Chief Judge Loretta Preska. The June 19 ruling in a suit brought by Cole Fowlkes is particularly significant in […]

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