The Supreme Court ruling says employers can’t fire people for being LGBT+
The court ruled that existing provisions under the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which outlaw discrimination based on sex, also apply to cases where “an employer fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender”. This act extends the sex-based employment discrimination protections known as Title VII to LGBT+ people in all 50 states, stopping (hopefully erasing soon) the thousands of obstacles put in place by Donald Trump’s presidency and his cabinet.
Neil Gorsuch – conservative justice – wrote:
“It is impossible to discriminate against a person for being homosexual or transgender without discriminating against that individual based on sex. Consider, for example, an employer with two employees, both of whom are attracted to men. The two individuals are, to the employer’s mind, materially identical in all respects, except that one is a man and the other a woman. If the employer fires the male employee for no reason other than the fact he is attracted to men, the employer discriminates against him for traits or actions it tolerates in his female colleague. Or take an employer who fires a transgender person who was identified as a male at birth but who now identifies as a female. If the employer retains an otherwise identical employee who was identified as female at birth, the employer intentionally penalises a person identified as male at birth for traits or actions that it tolerates in an employee identified as female at birth. Again, the individual employee’s sex plays an unmistakable and impermissible role in the discharge decision. We do not hesitate to recognise today a necessary consequence of that legislative choice: An employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender defies the law.”
Queer leaders, politicians and allies celebrate this historic decision.
Pete Buttigieg – famous and openly gay politician who tried the run to the White House – said:
“It was only 11 years ago this summer that I took an oath and accepted a job that I would have lost, if my chain of command learned that I was gay. Firing us wasn’t just permitted—it was policy.The struggle for equality did not end with marriage, nor did it end today. Conversion therapy persists. Black trans women are at grave risk daily. The administration is rolling back protections at every turn.”
But the list of politicians, allies and leaders does not stop.
Twitter got flooded with messages of hope and positive responses to this historic ruling.
Make no mistake—a federal Equality Act is still urgently needed. The struggle for equality did not end with marriage, nor did it end today. Conversion therapy persists. Black trans women are at grave risk daily. The administration is rolling back protections at every turn.
— Pete Buttigieg (@PeteButtigieg) June 15, 2020
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) June 15, 2020
Being who you are shouldn’t be a fireable offense, and today the Supreme Court has affirmed that truth for the LGBTQ community under our laws.
It’s a victory for liberty and justice for all.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) June 15, 2020
No one should have to live in fear of discrimination. The Supreme Court’s decision to uphold protections for LGBTQ+ workers preserves the LGBTQ+ movement’s hard-won progress—but we must keep up the pressure to ensure every LGBTQ+ person is free to be who they are without fear.
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) June 15, 2020
The LGBTQ civil rights movement began 51 years ago with the Stonewall Riots, led by trans POC heroes. Today we mark another milestone in our struggle for equality with a victory in the Supreme Court, extending Title VII nondiscrimination protections to LGBTQs.
O happy day!
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) June 15, 2020
.@Lavernecox on the SCOTUS Title VII ruling: "This law does not bring back to life the two transgender women who were murdered last week. Dominique Fells and Riah Milton. Does not bring back Tony McDade" pic.twitter.com/46lhLLl1YP
— Alex Paterson (@AlexPattyy) June 15, 2020
A victory hard won in the courts & on the streets. Grateful to the lawyers, organizers & activists but most grateful to those who had to live stealth or closeted, who lost jobs for living their truth, who left parts of themselves at their employers door. https://t.co/4aaSZBOlbz
— Janet Mock (@janetmock) June 15, 2020