The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization, praised the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for its July 16 ruling affirming that it considers employment discrimination based on sexual orientation to be prohibited under the sex discrimination provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
“Discrimination has no place in America — plain and simple,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “This historic ruling by the EEOC makes clear it agrees that workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation — much like gender identity — is illegal. While an important step, it also highlights the need for a comprehensive federal law permanently and clearly banning LGBT discrimination beyond employment to all areas of American life. Such a law would send a clear and permanent signal that discrimination against LGBT people will not be tolerated under any circumstances in this country, and we remain fully committed to making that happen.”
In 2012 decision Macy v. Holder, the EEOC determined that discrimination based on an individual’s gender identity is sex discrimination and thus constitutes a violation of the Civil Rights Act. EEOC rulings are not binding on federal courts; however, they are persuasive. This new decision continues an important trend in the development of case law. The Supreme Court has not yet ruled on this issue. HRC continues to advocate for permanent and explicit, legislated nondiscrimination protections at all levels of government for LGBT people. v
LGBT Museum chooses New York City as site for its home
The board of directors of the National LGBT Museum has voted to base the museum in New York City and has elected longtime LGBT activist Kevin Jennings as its co-chair.
Founded in 2008 by Board Co-Chair Tim Gold, the National LGBT Museum began examining a number of possible sites and held several meetings with elected officials and LGBT organizational leaders in New York before voting to choose New York as the site at its January 2015 board meeting. “New York simply makes sense,” Gold said. “It is both the site of many pivotal events in the history of the U.S. LGBT civil rights movement and a top destination worldwide for LGBT tourists. We are excited about siting the museum in this great world city.”
He added, “We are also excited to have Kevin Jennings join our team as board co-chair. A New York City resident, historian by training and a longtime leader in the LGBT movement, Kevin is the perfect partner to help lead the effort to establish this museum in New York City.”
Perhaps best known for founding the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, currently Jennings serves as executive director of the Arcus Foundation. “I am honored to join Tim and the board in this important work,” he said. “Tim and the board have done significant work in envisioning what a national LGBT museum might look like, and I am excited to join them in helping turn that vision into a reality.”
The board will focus on identifying sources of funding, staff and a physical location now that the question of the permanent home for the museum has been settled. “Our dream is to have the museum open in time for the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots (1969 demonstrations at the Stonewall Inn in Manhattan that are considered to be a defining moment in the fight for LGBT rights),” Gold said.
More information on the museum is available at www.nationallgbtmuseum.org. v