Workplace Discrimination and Transgender Employees
By Gregory Thyberg on June 17, 2020
Employees across the country are provided certain protections by federal and state employment laws. One of these protections is the ability to work in an environment that is free of discrimination. It is illegal to discriminate against an employee on the basis of characteristics such as age, sex, race, national origin, and religion.
On June 15th, 2020, the Supreme Court ruled that a landmark civil rights law from 1964 protects gay and transgender workers from discrimination in the workplace. Workplace discrimination attorney Gregory Thyberg can help his Sacramento, CA, clients understand their legal protections and options if they have been victims of workplace discrimination based on transgender identity.
Discrimination Faced by Transgender Employees
Although everyone should be able to work in a safe environment that is free of discrimination, for many transgender people, that is not the reality they live with. According to the National Center for Transgender Equality, more than 25 percent of transgender people report having lost a job due to bias and over 75 percent have dealt with some type of discrimination at work.
Discrimination against transgender people can take many different forms, including:
• Refusal to hire
• Denying promotions or pay raises
• Privacy violations
• Verbal harassment
• Use of gender slurs or sexual language
• Physical or sexual violence
Federal Laws and Transgender Discrimination
With the Supreme Court’s recent ruling, federal employment laws now prohibit gender identity discrimination. In a case involving a transgender woman who was denied federal employment after the agency learned that she had undergone a transition, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) gave their opinion that discrimination based on gender identity is a violation of Title VII of The Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits sex discrimination. This opinion set a precedent that has provided transgender workers with legal avenues for fighting employment bias.
California Laws and Transgender Discrimination
In addition to federal laws, each state has their own laws that provide employees with legal protection against discrimination. California explicitly protects transgender employees from workplace discrimination. Our state’s law includes gender identity and gender expression within the legal definition of sex, as it pertains to anti-discrimination laws.
What To Do If You’ve Faced Transgender Discrimination
Any transgender person who believes they have faced employment discrimination based on their gender identity should follow their workplace protocols for reporting harassment and discrimination. Additionally, these workers should get in touch with a knowledgeable workplace discrimination attorney, such as Gregory Thyberg, to discuss their legal options.
When making a claim of discrimination, details and evidence are key. We urge our Sacramento clients to take notes regarding when, where, and how they have faced discrimination – including times, dates, and any potential witnesses. Any workplace communication that demonstrates discrimination should also be saved.
If you have faced workplace discrimination, you may be due financial compensation for damages related to the incident. To learn more about your options for legal recourse, send us a message online or call (916) 204-9173 to schedule a consultation with Gregory Thyberg at your earliest convenience.