Supreme Court to Take Up LGBT Job Discrimination Cases

April 22, 2019 by Dan McCue
U.S. Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court agreed Monday to take up the question of whether provisions of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibiting employment discrimination applies to LGBT individuals.

The justices said they would hear Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, which has been consolidated with Altitude Express Inc. v. Zarda, cases involving individuals who claim they were fired because of their sexual orientation.

The Georgia case involves a discrimination claim filed by an employee of Clayton County, a suburb of Atlanta. The consolidated case, Altitude Express, involved a gay skydiving instructor who claims he was fired because of his sexual orientation.

The justices also said they would hear R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC, a case from Michigan involving a funeral home employee who was fired after disclosing that she was transitioning from male to female and dressed as a woman.

The funeral home argues in part that Congress was not thinking about transgender people when it included sex discrimination in Title VII.

The cases will be argued during the high court’s fall term, with decisions likely to be handed down in June 2020, just as Democrats and Republicans are preparing for their presidential nominating conventions.

In addition to becoming a hot button issue in the presidential campaign, the cases will likely be seen as a litmus test for the court, which has theoretically grown more conservative since President Donald Trump successfully appointed two justices: Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act does not specifically mention sexual orientation or transgender status. However, a series of recent rulings have said it does apply to members of the LGBT community.

Federal appeals courts in New York (the Second Circuit) and Chicago (the Seventh Circuit) have ruled that gay and lesbian employees are entitled to protection from workplace discrimination.

Meanwhile, the federal appeals court in Cincinnati (the Sixth Circuit) has extended similar protections for transgender people.

The Trump administration has argued Title VII was not intended to provide protections to gay and transgender individuals in the workplace.

Separately, the White House has withdrawn an Obama-era guidance to treat claims of transgender students as sex discrimination.

As is their custom, the justices did not say why they took up the cases.

 

Supreme Court

Alito: COVID Crisis Has Been a ‘Constitutional Stress Test’
Supreme Court
Alito: COVID Crisis Has Been a ‘Constitutional Stress Test’
November 13, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr., told the Federalist Society in a keynote address Thursday night the coronavirus pandemic has led to "previously unimaginable restrictions on individual liberty." "I am not diminishing the severity of the virus's threat to public health," Alito continued in a... Read More

Supreme Court Appears Likely to Preserve Most of Affordable Care Act
Supreme Court
Supreme Court Appears Likely to Preserve Most of Affordable Care Act
November 10, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON -- So much for the new conservative majority of the Supreme Court dismantling the Affordable Care Act. On Tuesday, during oral arguments for California v. Texas, one of this term's most anticipated cases, two members of that majority, suggested they're not inclined to strike down... Read More

All About the New ACA Challenge Before the Supreme Court
Supreme Court
All About the New ACA Challenge Before the Supreme Court
November 10, 2020
by Kate Michael

WASHINGTON — This morning, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on a legal challenge seeking to overturn the Affordable Care Act.  This third major challenge to the ACA heard by the Supreme Court, Texas v. California seeks to decide whether Congress, by eliminating the penalty... Read More

Political Gaze Shifts to the Supreme Court as Justices Hear Pivotal Health Care Case
Supreme Court
Political Gaze Shifts to the Supreme Court as Justices Hear Pivotal Health Care Case

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court with new Justice Amy Coney Barrett hears oral argument Tuesday in a case that threatens to wipe out the 2010 health care law, likely the term's most consequential case, under a political spotlight that rarely shines brighter on justices who would rather stay out of it.... Read More

Supreme Court Blocks Injured Officer's Suit Against Leader of Black Lives Matter Rally
Supreme Court
Supreme Court Blocks Injured Officer's Suit Against Leader of Black Lives Matter Rally

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Monday set aside an appeals court ruling by a panel of conservative judges that held an injured police officer could sue and win damages from the leader of a Black Lives Matter protest rally. The case had raised alarms among civil libertarians, who said it... Read More

Justice Barrett Participates in Her First Supreme Court Arguments
Supreme Court
Justice Barrett Participates in Her First Supreme Court Arguments
November 2, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON — Justice Amy Coney Barrett joined her new colleagues on the Supreme Court Monday, participating in oral arguments for the first time. The cases on the docket Monday were no head-turners. The first, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service v. Sierra Club Inc., concerned public disclosure... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top