us-supreme-court-lgbt-rightsIn a landmark ruling, decided by a 6-3 vote, the court ruled overwhelmingly that discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is a form of sex discrimination and therefore prohibited by the Civil Rights Act.

On Monday, 15 June 2020, the Supreme Court of the US ruled that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits workplace discrimination, applies to cases of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

This is a critical case for the USA, where more than half the states do not have explicit protection against discrimination for LGBTIQ people. The ruling comes at a time when the Trump administration has rolled back numerous advances in the protection of particularly trans people, including the Department of Health removing protection from discrimination for trans people in healthcare on Friday, 12 June 2020.

The Justice Department argued that Title VII doesn’t cover discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Executive Director of OutRight Action International, Jessica Stern, comments:

“The Supreme Court stating explicitly that under the Civil Rights Act discrimination based on sex includes discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is a tremendous victory. The decision comes at a time when the Trump administration has been viciously attacking the rights of LGBTIQ people, in particular trans people. It will protect millions of Americans from discrimination in the workplace, and sends a powerful message – that political power-play can not erase basic human rights. This judgment will have implications for LGBTIQ people everywhere – governments and movements are inspired by each other, and landmark judgments are quoted by courts across the world. OutRight welcomes, and celebrates this ruling!”

The NGLCC Co-Founder & President Justin Nelson, Co-Founder & CEO Chance Mitchell and Out Leadership CEO and Founder Todd Sears release a joint statement in response to the Supreme Court Decision Regarding LGBTQ+ Equality.

The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), along with its partner Out Leadership are elated the Supreme Court has ensured a state-sanctioned license to discriminate will not be issued in this country’s workplaces. The LGBT community is a vital part of the American economy and deserves equal treatment under the law. The NGLCC and Out Leadership will continue to advocate for our community’s right to live their lives free from discrimination in their places of business and in their local communities, which this decision now affirms.

This decision is a step forward for LGBT rights in the United States, and reminds all of us that the protections for other minority groups, including people of color, the differently-abled, and women, must also be upheld and strengthened.

This decision brings national attention to many of the inequities that have kept law-abiding LGBT citizens from achieving all they can. We are now renewed in our determination to see the United States Congress now pass The Equality Act, enshrining these and other essential protections into federal law. Our economy simply does not achieve all it can unless everyone is included and given a fair shot. The protections of the Equality Act bring us much closer to the inclusion we need for the American Dream to be accessible to every LGBT American.

Business will continue to be the catalyst for positive change for America’s diverse and marginalized communities. At NGLCC and Out Leadership, we have nearly 400 corporate and government partners that already understand the economic imperative of inclusivity within their company and throughout their supply chains. Just as we saw a patchwork of marriage laws ultimately evolve into a unified protection of the freedom to marry, we will always advocate for a coast-to-policy of inclusive workplaces and business environments where all LGBT Americans are able to achieve their full potential.