Best Ohio Lawyer For Employment Discrimination Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning Employees: Can I sue for discrimination at work if my boss is continually harassing me and making fun of me because I am transgender? If I am transgender, do sexual harassment laws apply to me? Can I sue for wrongful termination if I was fired today when I complained about LGBT/LGBTQ or sexual orientation discrimination?
At Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm, our employment lawyers work tirelessly to make sure that developments in employment law are studied and put into practice whenever possible. Just as soon as a couple of years ago, discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning (“LGBT/LGBTQ”) employees was completely excused at the federal level. Sure, some states and even individual cities and communities passed laws that outlawed discrimination against LGBT employees, but at the federal level, firing or treating someone differently on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity was perfectly legal. However, our employment discrimination attorneys have been incredibly encouraged on the strides that have been made to outlaw discrimination against LGBT employees. In fact, we have chronicled this shift in our blog over the past couple of years. (See Can I Be Denied A Promotion Because I Am Transgender?; Can My Employers Discriminate Against Me Because I Am LGBT?; Can I Be Fired For Gender Transition?; and Can My Employer Lock Me Out of The Restrooms/Bathrooms?).
The shift can largely be seen in recent Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC“) decisions that make clear that workplace discrimination against transgender people is discrimination based on sex and, thus, is unlawful under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. (See Top Employment Law Attorney: Do Not File With The EEOC Without Doing This First; File With The EEOC Or Get A Lawyer? Call The Right Attorney; Should I Get A Lawyer To Help Me File An EEOC Charge?; and Should I File With The EEOC On My Own? Call The Right Attorney).
Additionally, in late 2014, Attorney General Eric Holder circulated a memo among Department of Justice (“DOJ“) attorneys stating that the DOJ will now interpret Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as prohibiting discrimination based on gender status, including transgender and transitioning. Workers in same sex relationships are finally seeing some progress.
With this shift in making LGBT/LGBTQ discrimination unlawful, cases are starting to appear where employers are targeting LGBT employees, and as a result, are facing lawsuits. Bojangles Restaurants, Inc., which operates popular Bojangles fast food restaurants in the Southeast, is facing a big lawsuit as a result of discriminatory conduct towards a transgender employee. Jonathan Wolfe, a transgender woman who worked at a Fayetteville, N.C. Bojangles location, was forced to endure near-daily offensive comments about her gender identity and appearance. A manager and assistant manager at Bojangles constantly made statement regarding Wolfe taking part in male behavior and grooming practices because of the gender Wolfe was assigned at birth. The managers told Wolfe to change her voice, and start walk and behaving differently so she would “look like a male.”
In addition, the managers also told Wolfe that she was not allowed to come to the restaurant on her off days because she was dressed as a woman. Wolfe was also not permitted to wear makeup or false fingernails while on duty, even though other female employees were permitted to do so. Wolfe’s direct supervisor told her to “pray to God or go to hell” and that “God made woman for man.” In response to the numerous derogatory and offensive comments, Wolfe complained several times to Bojangles management about the discriminatory treatment, but nothing was done.
Soon after Wolfe began complaining about the discriminatory treatment on the basis of her gender identity, Wolfe was informed she was being transferred to another Bojangles location. When Wolfe objected to the transfer, Wolfe was told to leave, which prompted her to call the Bojangles employee hotline. After that call, Wolfe’s supervisor fired her. So, not only does Wolfe have a basis for a gender identity discrimination claim, she also has a retaliation claim for being fired soon after complaining about gender identity discrimination.
The bottom line is that gender identity and other LGBT discrimination cases are just beginning to make their way through the courts. In order to navigate this new area of employment law, you should have an experienced employment attorney on your side; one that has their finger on the pulse of developing employment law areas.
If you are searching “I need a lawyer because I have was wrongfully fired or terminated today;” or “I have been discriminated against because I am …” gay, a lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, queer; or even think that you might need an employment law lawyer that works with LGBTQ employees, then it would be best to call the right attorney to schedule a free and confidential consultation at 866-797-6040. Your employment rights are constantly changing and the best way to find out if you can sue your boss, manager, supervisor or employer for discrimination, harassment, or wrongful termination is to call Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm and talk to its attorneys, who are experienced and dedicated to protecting the rights of employees just like you.
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