Category Archives: Civil Rights

Seventh Circuit: Title VII Offers No Protection Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination

In the midst of a legal, political and cultural landscape expanding the rights of LGBT individuals, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has held to prior precedent in reaffirming that Title VII does not prohibit sexual orientation discrimination. Kimberly Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College, __ S.Ct. __, No. 15-720 (July 28, 2016).  According …

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Update Company Policies for Transgendered Employees

Although no federal statute explicitly prohibits employment discrimination based on gender identity, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has actively sought out opportunities to ensure coverage for transgender individuals under Title VII’s sex discrimination provisions under its Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years 2012-2016. After the EEOC issued its groundbreaking administrative ruling in Macy v. Bureau of …

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Key Implications of Fourth Circuit’s Denial of En Banc Review of Pro-Transgender Ruling

On May 31, 2016, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals denied en banc review of an April decision permitting transgender students to use sex-segregated facilities that are consistent with their gender identity.  The Fourth Circuit encompasses North Carolina; thus, the case G.G. v. Gloucester County Public School Board (“Gloucester County”), although it arose in Virginia, creates …

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Termination For Conduct Caused By Side Effects of Prescription Medication Was Not Disability Discrimination

A federal court in Florida has upheld an employee’s termination due to her “inebriated” conduct that was caused by her use of prescription medications, holding that her discharge did not constitute disability discrimination. Caporicci v. Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc., Case No. 8-14-cv-2131-T-36EAJ (M.D. Fla. May 27, 2016). Lisa Caporicci worked for Chipotle as a crew member and …

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Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act: New Pregnancy Provision Taking Effect in August

On August 10, 2016, a new pregnancy provision of the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act (“CADA”) will take effect. While the CADA had previously been interpreted as prohibiting pregnancy discrimination and requiring accommodations for pregnancy, the new provision strengthens and clarifies those protections. Indeed, the amendment will require more of employers and will make it easier for plaintiffs …

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North Carolina Retailers Navigate Conflicting Laws Regarding Transgender Protections

On March 23, 2016, the North Carolina Legislature passed House Bill 2, the “Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act” (“HB2”), that overturned a Charlotte ordinance extending anti-discrimination protections to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (“LGBT”) individuals and allowing transgender persons to use the bathroom of their choice. Instead, HB2 requires individuals to use public bathrooms …

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Oxford, Alabama, City Council Repeals Bathroom Ordinance Targeting Transgender Individuals

The Oxford, Alabama, City Council has repealed on May 4, 2016, an ordinance it passed a week previously that barred transgender people from using a bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity. (See our article, Oxford, Alabama, City Council Adopts Ordinance Restricting Access to Bathroom Facilities Based on Biological Sex.) The ordinance made it unlawful for …

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Fourth Circuit Appeals Court Rules in Favor of Transgender Student

Schools across the country have found themselves at the forefront of the societal debate on the appropriate manner in which to address issues surrounding accommodation of transgendered persons. Conflicting regulatory rulings, contemplated state legislation, and in the case of North Carolina, state prohibitions on accommodation have led to a patchwork of inconsistencies and doubt in …

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International Women’s Day 2016: Time is Now for Global Gender Equality and to (finally) Close Gender Gap

Today is International Women’s Day. Each year on March 8th, women celebrate the progress we’ve made while continuing to advocate for change regarding gender equality and women’s rights. Around the world, celebrations range from very simple demonstrations of respect, appreciation and love towards women to elaborate events that honor our economic, political and social achievements. …

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Hillshire Brands Company Pays $4 Million to Settle Race Discrimination Suit

African American Bakery Workers Subjected to Racist Comments and Graffiti in the Worksite, Federal Agency Charged DALLAS – Hillshire Brands Company (formerly known as the Sara Lee Corporation) will pay $4 million to a group of 74 African-American former employees and provide other significant relief to settle a lawsuit where they were subjected to a …

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