Sexual Orientation Discrimination

News & Analysis as of

Transgender Video Game Industry Employee Converted to Independent Contractor Status Raises Misclassification and Discrimination...

A prominent Washington State video game company, Valve Corporation, creator of Half-Life, Counter-Strike, and Left 4 Dead, has been sued by a former employee it converted into an independent contractor as an accommodation to...more

Five New Challenges Facing Retail Employers

This issue of Take 5 is devoted to recent laws and court rulings that have particular significance for retailers. These five short articles address fundamental changes to policies and practices in the retail workplace,...more

Transgender Student Issues – The FEDs Speak, But Is It Really News In Connecticut?

On May 13, 2016, with much fanfare, the United States Department of Justice and the United States Department of Education jointly issued a “Dear Colleague Letter” [“DCL”] in order to provide guidance for school districts with...more

Federal Government Issues Guidance to Schools on Title IX and Transgender Students

In a move that made headlines across the country, two federal government agencies issued a significant guidance document last week interpreting Title IX's requirements for protecting transgender students' rights....more

Transgender Employee Bathroom Use

Ah, the bathroom. A place of relief and solitude for many, but for the last six weeks, it has been the focus of controversy. North Carolina now requires that people only use restrooms designated for the gender that appears...more

U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice Issue Dear Colleague Letter Addressing Protections for Transgender...

On May 13, 2016, the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Education issued a Dear Colleague Letter (the “Letter”) addressing civil rights protections for transgender students under Title IX. The Letter is...more

Federal Government Provides Schools New Guidance Regarding Transgender Students

Two divisions of the federal government have weighed in on the recent legal controversies surrounding accommodations for transgender students. The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and the U.S....more

Government Issues New Guidance on Transgender Students

The U.S. Departments of Justice and Education issued a joint Dear Colleague Letter on May 13, 2016, clarifying that Title IX prohibits discrimination based on gender identity, including transgender status. The guidance states...more

New Federal Guidelines on Supporting Transgender Students Under Title IX

Amidst a recently intensified national debate regarding support for transgender students in schools, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Department of Education (DOE) today issued new guidance setting out guidelines for...more

Legal Update: 5/13/16 OCR "Dear Colleague" Letter Regarding Title IX -Transgender Students

As a follow-up to prior updates regarding transgender students’ rights, on May 13, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued a “Dear Colleague” letter regarding LEA’s Title IX obligations for...more

Federalism and LGBT Rights in North Carolina: Which Sovereign Has the Final Say?

Prior posts on this blog have discussed recent conflicts in Alabama and Mississippi that frame our country’s ongoing efforts to define the scope of federalism. Now, North Carolina has become the newest front in the fight to...more

Tale of Several Lawsuits: Filings in North Carolina and Mississippi Regarding Gender Identity Laws

In response to the Department of Justice’s letter last week (see our previous blog post) regarding North Carolina’s HB2 law about transgender bathroom access (among other things), the Governor and Secretary of the Department...more

EEOC: Denial of Transgender Employees' Access to a Common Restroom Violates Title VII

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a "Fact Sheet” setting forth its position that denying an employee equal access to a common (i.e., multi-user) restroom corresponding to the employee's...more

Get Ready to Rumble—DOJ Alerts North Carolina Governor that New Bathroom Law Violates Federal Statutes

The head of the federal Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division wrote to North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory that HB2 (see our previous blog posts about HB2 here and here), a law banning public agencies from allowing...more

United States Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Adopts OCR's Title IX Gender Identity Interpretation for Transgender Students'...

A majority panel of three judges in GG v Gloucester County School Board, U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Cir. Case No. 15-2056 (April 19, 2016), reversed a federal trial court's decision, endorsed the Office of Civil Rights'...more

First Federal Appeals Court Rules that Title IX Applies in Transgender Bathroom Case

Yesterday, in a landmark ruling, a federal appellate court decided that under Title IX a transgender student can challenge a school board policy that limits bathroom and locker room access based on biological sex. The United...more

Government Outlines Key Labor and Employment Initiatives

Representatives of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), as well as the Department of Labor and the Department of Justice (DOJ), participated in an American Bar Association Equal Opportunity Law conference in...more

Court Limits Human Rights Tribunal Jurisdiction to Address Discrimination Claims from Persons not in Position of Power

The Court of Appeal for British Columbia (Court of Appeal) recently concluded in Schrenk v. British Columbia (Human Rights Tribunal) (Schrenk) that the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal’s (Tribunal) jurisdiction does not...more

States & Municipalities – The Engines That Are Driving Legislative Activity

While many are mesmerized by the presidential primaries and remain frustrated by gridlock in Congress, states and municipalities are aggressively tackling social and economic issues that impact employers. The states of...more

Louisiana Governor Institutes Sexual Orientation and Transgender Protections for State Workers and Contractors

On April 13, 2016, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed Executive Order No. JBE 2016-11 prohibiting discrimination or harassment by Louisiana state agencies against individuals based on their sexual orientation or...more

After Second Thought……..North Carolina Governor Signs Executive Order Rolling Back Portions of Controversial Law

Just weeks after he signed HB 2, which covered transgender bathroom access, on April 12, North Carolina Governor Pat McCory signed an Executive Order clarifying and apparently attempting to repeal certain aspects of the law. ...more

Louisiana Governor Signs LGBT Discrimination Executive Order in Public Employment and Services

On April 13, 2016, Louisiana’s new governor, John Bel Edwards, signed an executive order protecting state employees and employees of state contractors from discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual...more

Bathroom Bills: What Employers Need To Know

Seyfarth Synopsis: The passage of “Bathroom” or “Religious Freedom” bills raises issues for employers operating in impacted states. Employers in these states may wish to consider taking proactive and affirmative steps in the...more

What North Carolina Employers Need To Know About New "Bathroom Law"

On April 12, 2016, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory issued an Executive Order to clarify and somewhat lessen the impact of what has widely been referred to as the state’s new “bathroom law.” The new law, passed a few weeks...more

Love Won't Let Me Wait (for Congress): EEOC Files “Sexual Orientation” Employment Discrimination Lawsuits Based on Title VII of...

On March 1, 2016, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") did something that many in the world of employment law have anticipated for a long time but still find remarkable: it sued two employers in federal...more

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