Human Resource Executive
Morrison & Foerster of counsel Andrew Turnbull spoke to Human Resource Executive about the U.S. Supreme Court’s eventual decision on whether Title VII prohibits workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
The decision will be a close one, Andrew said, explaining that attorneys for the plaintiff employees involved argued that discriminating against a man for being attracted to another man or against a transgender worker for changing genders are both forms of sex stereotyping that fall under the court’s ruling in the 1989 Price Waterhouse case. However, according to Andrew, “employers’ attorneys and Solicitor General Noel Francisco, while recognizing Price Waterhouse as good law, claimed that ruling in favor of the employees would create new protected categories not covered by the definition of ‘sex’ under Title VII.”
Andrew added that regardless of the state and federal landscapes for LGBTQ employment protections, an increasing number of employers are instating policies that protect such workers from discrimination “because they recognize it is good business and helps them recruit and retain top talent.”