Update: The ACLU has released their press release on the court decision. Here’s a Diane Schroer quote about the ruling from that press release:
“It is especially gratifying that the court has ruled that discriminating against someone for transitioning is illegal,” said Diane Schroer, the plaintiff in the case. “I knew all along that the 25 years of experience I gained defending our country didn’t disappear when I transitioned, so it was hard to understand why I was being turned down for a job doing what I do best just because I’m transgender. It is tremendously gratifying to have your faith in this country, and what is fundamentally right and fair, be reaffirmed.”
The ACLU’s blog post on this court decision is here.
For those who don’t remember, Diane Schroer was told she was going to be hired by the U.S. Library Of Congress, and saw the decision to employ her rescinded after she told her hiring agent she was going to transition from male-to-female in the workplace.
After hearing the evidence presented at trial, I conclude that Schroer was discriminated against because of sex in violation of Title VII. The reasons for that conclusion are set forth below, in two parts. First, I explain why, as a factual matter, several of the Library’s stated reasons for refusing to hire Schroer were not its “true reasons, but were pretext[s] for discrimination,” Tex. Dep’t of Cmty. Affairs v. Burdine, 450 U.S. 248, 253 (1981). Second, I explain why the Library’s conduct, whether viewed as sex stereotyping or as discrimination literally “because of . . . sex,” violated Title VII.
…None of the five assertedly legitimate reasons that the Library has given for refusing to hire Schroer withstands scrutiny.
In refusing to hire Diane Schroer because her appearance and background did not comport with the decisionmaker’s sex stereotypes about how men and women should act and appear, and in response to Schroer’s decision to transition, legally, culturally, and physically, from male to female, the Library of Congress violated Title VII’s prohibition on sex discrimination.
The Clerk is directed to set a conference to discuss and schedule the remedial phase of this case.
What a wonderful decision.
Great work by the ACLU on this case so far — I hope this civil rights ruling holds if there should be an appeal of the decision.
* Pam’s House Blend tag: Diane Schroer