Sexual Orientation

News & Analysis as of

Texas Court Enjoins Enforcement of Regulation that Would Forbid Discrimination in Healthcare on the Basis of Gender Identity and...

As LGBTQ rights have taken center stage in political and social issues, FordHarrison has been following ground-breaking litigation related to LGBTQ rights and providing updates. In the latest decision, a federal judge in...more

What Can the Business Community Expect from a Trump Administration

As Donald Trump’s administration takes shape, the business community stands watch expecting a business-friendly White House. Trump’s promises of fewer regulations and lower taxes have small and large businesses alike feeling...more

New California Labor and Employment Laws for 2017

Continuing a trend from recent years, the California Legislature passed, and Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law, numerous labor and employment bills in 2016. Each becomes effective on Jan. 1, 2017, unless otherwise...more

Seventh Circuit Indicates It May Conclude that Sexual Orientation Discrimination is Sex Discrimination Under Title VII

Since its enactment, courts have followed the premise that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not prohibit sexual orientation discrimination. A changing of the tides began in July 2015, when the Equal Employment...more

Current Title VII May Soon Protect Sexual Orientation

The familiar language of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination because of a person's "race, color, religion, sex, or national origin." As many courts and commentators have pointed out,...more

What Employers Can Expect from the New Administration – Part 1: Executive Orders & Administrative Actions

What will a Trump administration do to the labor and employment law landscape? While we can’t predict for certain, we figure we can at least provide better insight than the pollsters who have spent the last year following the...more

Courts are Trending Toward Prohibiting Sexual Orientation Discrimination under Federal Law

Two recent court decisions highlight the ongoing struggle by federal courts to determine whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation....more

New Attorney General Nominee Raises Questions for Civil Rights Enforcement

President-Elect Donald Trump has offered the job of Attorney General of the United States to Senator Jeff Sessions (R- Alabama). The announcement raised eyebrows in some circles due to Senator Sessions’ history and recent...more

Sexual Orientation Discrimination Claims Under TITLE VII Won’t Be Dismissed…in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of...

The EEOC is on a mission to expand the scope of Title VII to prohibit employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sexual orientation, and that mission has been accomplished (for now) in the United States...more

Supreme Court to Rule on Case Addressing Bathroom Access Based on Gender Identity

On October 28, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal in the matter of Gloucester County School Board v. G.G., which asks the Court to weigh in on the issue of restroom access for transgender students. The...more

The Election is Over, Now What?

Now that the election is over, many clients and friends are asking what labor and employment law might look like under the soon to be President Trump. Of course, no one can predict exactly what will happen in the coming term....more

The Potential Impact Of a Trump Presidency on Employers

Based on promises made during the campaign, it appears employers may expect changes in the government’s approach to workplace regulation. Although we certainly do not have a crystal ball, President-elect Trump campaigned on a...more

Pennsylvania Federal Court Issues Groundbreaking Opinion on Sexual Orientation Discrimination

While the stunning election of Donald Trump as this country's 45th President certainly will go down as historic, it's not the only groundbreaking news to have impacted the societal and employment landscape over the last...more

Oh, Wait A Minute — Sexual Orientation Bias DOES Violate Title VII?

Feeling whipsawed? Last summer, I reported on the Hively v. Ivy Tech decision, in which a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that discrimination based on sexual orientation is...more

With the Election (Mercifully) Behind Us, What Will a Trump Administration Mean for Employers?

The 2016 Presidential election was arguably the most contentious, unpredictable, and politically polarizing race in this nation's history. The contours of the electoral map changed by the hour in the days leading up to...more

SCOTUS Grimm decision could impact CFPB position on ECOA protection for gender identity and sexual orientation

On October 28, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court granted the petition for a writ of certiorari in Grimm v. Gloucester County School Board, a decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit that marked the first time...more

Sexual Orientation Discrimination Under Title VII

Last week, on November 4, 2016, a District Judge in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania held that discrimination based on sexual orientation constitutes sex stereotyping and is prohibited by Title VII. EEOC v. Scott Medical...more

Discrimination: Sexual Orientation vs Religious Belief

In the case of Lee v Ashers Baking Co Ltd [2016] NICA 39, the Northern Ireland Court of Appeal considered how to treat competing characteristics protected under anti-discrimination law, namely sexual orientation and religious...more

Court sets aside Title VII sexual orientation decision, agrees to rehear

The full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has vacated Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College, which found that Title VII did not protect against sexual orientation discrimination. I wrote about the decision, issued...more

Seventh Circuit Reverses Decision that Title VII Doesn’t Protect Against Anti-Gay Discrimination and Agrees to Re-hear Employment...

The Seventh Circuit reversed and vacated the panel decision holding that Title VII does not protect employees from anti-gay discrimination and will re-hear the case, Hivey v. Tech Community College, en banc. Kimberly Hively...more

Second Circuit to Consider Whether Sexual Orientation Discrimination is Protected Under Title VII

On September 16, 2016, in Christiansen v. Omnicom Group Inc. et al., 16-cv-748 (2d Cir 2016), ad agency DDB Worldwide (“DDB”) argued before the Second Circuit that Title VII does not support discrimination claims based on...more

Hairstyle Is Not a Protected Category but Sexual Orientation Likely Is

Several recent decisions have opened the door to further scrutiny regarding discrimination and the basis for a finding of discriminatory conduct by an employer. These decisions continue to show the volatility of...more

Seventh Circuit Rules Sexual Orientation Discrimination Not Protected By Title VII, But Ruling Has Little Overall Impact

The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit recently held that, consistent with existing case law, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is not Title VII discrimination "on the basis of sex," and,...more

Minister or Not? Gay Bias Case Turns on Employee’s Role

Seyfarth Synopsis: A federal judge has allowed a discrimination lawsuit to proceed against the Archdiocese of Chicago. The plaintiff alleges that his engagement to another man resulted in his termination. The church sought...more

Out With the Old “Mad Men” Era Sex Discrimination Guidelines for Federal Contractors

By Final Rule on August 15, 2016, the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) updated its sex discrimination guidelines, in an effort to ensure that companies doing business with the...more

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