Judge issues decision favorable to Md. trans student on locker room use

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A federal judge in Maryland has issued a decision favorable to a transgender student whose school has barred him from the locker room consistent with his gender identity.

In a 40-page decision, U.S. District Judge George Russell III, an Obama appointee, stopped short Tuesday of issuing a preliminary injunction in favor of Max Brennan, identified as M.A.B in the lawsuit, but nonetheless finds St. Michaels Middle High School in Talbot County’s policy “does not withstand” heightened scrutiny and amounts to unlawful sex-stereotyping.

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Ex-worker accuses Cheesecake Factory of sex discrimination

By : Wire Report
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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – A former dishwasher at a Cheesecake Factory in Rhode Island is suing the restaurant, alleging his managers allowed him to be sexually harassed by a male co-worker.

The Providence Journal reports Jessie Ross alleges the restaurant discriminated against him because he’s a heterosexual male and retaliated against him when he complained about the harassment.

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EEOC: Lawsuit alleging sexual-orientation discrimination settled

By : Wire Report
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Baltimore (AP) – A landmark lawsuit alleging sex discrimination based on sexual orientation has been settled for more than $200,000, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced June 29.

The EEOC said in a statement that Pallet Companies, doing business as IFCO Systems, will pay just over $182,000 to Yolanda Boone, who alleged she was fired after complaining that her supervisor made comments regarding her sexual orientation and appearance. The EEOC said in its lawsuit filed earlier this year in Baltimore that Boone’s supervisor made comments including “I want to turn you back into a woman” and “You would look good in a dress.”

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Transgender law makes advances, but slowly

By : Wire Report
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Washington (AP) – With two milestone developments in the federal government’s policy on gender issues, last week was heady for transgender people and advocates.

First, an impassioned Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the government was suing North Carolina for discriminating against transgender people. Later, federal officials issued guidance to public schools on accommodating transgender students.

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President Obama to schools: allow transgender students bathroom access

By : Wire Report
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UPDATE:

WASHINGTON – House Committee on Education and the Workforce Ranking Member Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice released joint guidance today to help provide educators the information they need to ensure that all students can attend school in an environment free from discrimination based on sex:

 

“The Departments of Education and Justice should be commended for releasing this important guidance regarding the rights of transgender students in educational facilities. The timing of this guidance can help to quell the unfounded fears that have been spurred by damaging bills in some states. This guidance can also help schools to familiarize themselves with the expectations of the law, so that they may intelligently protect the rights and dignity of transgender students and, indeed, all students.”

 

Washington (AP) — Public schools must permit transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their chosen gender identity, according to an Obama administration directive issued amid a court fight between the federal government and North Carolina.

The guidance from leaders at the departments of Education and Justice says public schools are obligated to treat transgender students in a way that matches their gender identity, even if their education records or identity documents indicate a different sex.

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Plan targets health care bias against transgender people

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration proposed Sept. 3 to ban discrimination against transgender people throughout the health care system, expanding anti-bias protections in the president’s health overhaul.

The new protections are part of a much broader proposed regulation by the Department of Health and Human Services. In a first, the overhaul specified that “sex” is a protected category under federal law, and the regulation carries that a step further, clarifying that “gender identity” is included within the Affordable Care Act’s protective umbrella banning sex discrimination.

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Battle between transgender employee and Starwood heats up, for the people

By : Billy Manes
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Last year, Gina Versace filed a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity lawsuit against her former employer, Starwood Hotels, in federal court. She alleges that she was discriminated against while under the company’s employ, the suit says, and was consistently referred to as a male, despite officially documented evidence otherwise. In 2013, Versace was fired for insubordination, according to the lawsuit and the Orlando Sentinel, though she (and her attorney) believe the motivations were more deeply seeded in discrimination. This morning, Versace’s new attorney, Matt Morgan (the son of high-profile attorney John Morgan) held a press conference at the Morgan & Morgan offices downtown to further state the case. While we were unable to attend (meetings!), the following accusations issued via press release could and should rattle Starwood, which publicly states that it prides itself on LGBT inclusion. We’ll have more on Versace’s story in the coming weeks.

Check out the press release outlining the case after the jump: 

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Transgender man sues loan company over sex bias claim

By : Wire Report
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New Orleans (AP) – A 21-year-old transgender man says in a sex discrimination lawsuit that he was forced to leave his job at a Mississippi-based loan company once officials there found out he was born a woman but dressed and acted like a man.

Tristan Broussard filed suit on April 13 against First Tower Loan LLC., a financial loan company based in Flowood, Mississippi, with offices in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Missouri and Illinois.

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Lakeland eye clinic sued for transgender discrimination

By : Staff Report
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Lakeland – The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is filing a lawsuit against Lakeland Eye Clinic for discrimination after the clinic fired a transgender employee. saying the employer violated a federal law because the employee is transgender.

It was stated in the lawsuit that the woman was fired because she was transitioning from male to female, therefore not conforming to the employer’s gender-based expectations.

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DOE: Trans students protected under Title IX

By : Staff Report
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Tucked away in a document on reducing sexual assault at school—part of an unprecedented effort by the Obama administration to address such abuse—the Department of Education included a historic guideline extending federal civil rights protections to transgender students.

Title IX—the civil rights law that prohibits sex discrimination in federally funded education programs and activities—also bars discrimination on the basis of gender identity, announced the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, marking a major victory in the fight to codify LGBT protections into federal law.

“Title IX’s sex discrimination prohibition extends to claims of discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity and OCR accepts such complaints for investigation,” reads the 46-page document. “Similarly, the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the parties does not change a school’s obligations. Indeed, LGBT youth report high rates of sexual harassment and sexual violence. A school should investigate and resolve allegations of sexual violence regarding LGBT students using the same procedures and standards that it uses in all complaints involving sexual violence.”

Though aimed at clarifying how Title IX relates to sexual violence, the guidance carries far broader implications. LGBT advocates note that transgender students will not just be explicitly protected from physical or sexual abuse under Title IX, but from all forms of discrimination in education.

“It certainly would be our view that transgender students should be given the ability to participate in sex segregated activities, like sports teams, consistent with their gender identity,” said Ian Thompson, legislative representative at the American Civil Liberties Union on MSNBC. “Failure on part of the school to allow that would be discrimination against that student.”