A three-judge panel of the Richmond, Virginia, based U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled on August 16 that people with a gender dysphoria diagnosis are considered to have a “disability” that entitles them to protection against discrimination under two federal statutes, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Vocational Rehabilitation Act. The 2-1 decision is the first in which a federal appeals court has found such individuals to be entitled … <Read More>
A ten-judge bench of the Chicago-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit ruled on July 9 by a vote of 7-3 that the religion clauses of the 1st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution give churches total immunity from hostile environment claims by their ministerial employees. Demkovich v. St. Andrew the Apostle Parish, 2021 U.S. App. LEXIS 20410, 2021 WL 2880232 (7th Cir. en banc).
Rejecting a decision by a three-judge … <Read More>
U.S. District Judge Analisa Torres (S.D.N.Y.) ruled on August 5 in United States v. Asare, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139864, that three men who were denied plastic surgery by Dr. Emmanuel O. Asare because he believed them to be HIV-positive are entitled to the maximum statutory damages available in such a case under the Americans With Disabilities Act and the New York City Human Rights Law. The court ordered that Dr. Asare to pay … <Read More>
On June 15, 2020, the Supreme Court ruled that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects LGBTQ people from employment discrimination. On July 8, 2020, the Court took away that protection from most LGBTQ people who are employed as teachers by religious schools. In a ruling expanding a “ministerial exception” to anti-discrimination laws that it had recognized under the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment of the Bill of Right eight … <Read More>
U.S. District Judge Edmond E. Chang ruled on September 30 that Sandor Demokovich, a church organist and choir director who was fired from his position at St. Andrew the Apostle Parish, Calumet City, in the Archdiocese of Chicago, after marrying his same-sex partner, may pursue a hostile environment disability harassment claim against his former employers under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Demkovich v. St. Andrew the Apostle Parish, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168584 … <Read More>
For the first time, a federal court has recognized that individuals suffering from gender dysphoria are entitled to protection against workplace discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a federal law that requires employers to reasonably accommodate employees’ disabilities. The May 18 ruling by U.S. District Judge Joseph F. Leeson, Jr., accepted an argument by attorneys for Kate Lynn Blatt, a transgender woman, that a provision in the ADA excluding protection for “gender identity … <Read More>
One of the nation’s most senior federal trial judges, Warren W. Eginton (age 92) of Connecticut, rejected an employer’s motion to dismiss a Title VII sex discrimination claim brought by an openly gay employee in a November 17 ruling. Boutillier v. Hartford Public Schools, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 159093, 2016 WL 6818348 (D. Conn.). Eginton, who was appointed by Jimmy Carter in 1979 and has been a senior judge (semi-retired) since 1992, accepted the argument … <Read More>