The administration is claiming that being trans isn’t protected under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Court filings from the Tr*mp administration have claimed that it is legal to fire someone because they are transgender. The administration argues that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which protects sex, does not include transgender people.
The filing from the Justice Department says: “Title VII does not prohibit discrimination against transgender persons based on their transgender status. It simply does not speak to discrimination because of an individual’s gender identity or a disconnect between an individual’s gender identity and the individual’s sex.”
It adds: “Title VII prohibits treating an individual less favorably than similarly situated individuals of the opposite sex.”
The Supreme Court is expected in October to begin hearing cases in which people were fired because of their LGBTQ identity. Predictably, Christian group Alliance Defending Freedom is in favour.
The three cases that the Supreme Court will be taking on relate to Donald Zarda, Gerald Bostock and Aimee Stephens. Donald and Gerald claim to have been fired due to them being gay, while Aimee says she was fired due to her being transgender.
A lower court found in favour of Aimee, with the judge in the case saying “it is analytically impossible to fire an employee based on that employee’s status as a transgender person without being motivated, at least in part, by the employee’s sex.”
It is feared that if the Supreme Court rules in favour of the employers, LGBTQ rights in the country could be rolled back. It would mean that sex-based discrimination laws would no longer protect trans people, and with no federal laws protecting discrimination against LGBTQ people, it could make it easier to discriminate in many fields, like employment, housing and even medical care.
This court filing comes in the same week that the Tr*mp administration proposed a new rule to allow businesses to discriminate against LGBTQ people, so long as it was based on their religious beliefs.
The Labour Department say the proposal has been created to “ensure that conscience and religious freedom are given the broadest protection permitted by law” for companies that compete for federal contracts.
But LGBTQ activists have argued that the proposed rule will permit companies to legally discriminate against – and avoiding hiring – lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer people, or anyone who doesn’t practice or agree with their religion.