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Second Circuit ruling strengthens LGBTQ rights in workplace

A major ruling out of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit says that the Civil Rights Act protects workers from discrimination based on sexual orientation. This is considered a massive breakthrough for LGBTQ rights and it is unknown at this time whether the case will be appealed to the Supreme Court of the United States. The ruling is supported by another appeals court, though a third court in Atlanta ruled the other way.

The case in question involved a sky diving instructor, who was fired in 2010 after he told a female student that he was "100 percent gay." He said this to calm the woman, who he said seemed to be nervous about being tightly strapped to a man who was not her boyfriend. She told her boyfriend about the comment, and he proceeded to complain to the sky diving instructor's employer. He was fired because of this.

The instructor sued Altitude Express, and that lawsuit was the case heard recently by the Second Circuit. The judges ruled in favor of the sky diving instructor 10-3. An unfortunate wrinkle in this story is that the sky diving instructor actually died in a sky diving accident in 2014, but his case proceeded on thanks to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

It doesn't matter what your race is; or your gender; or your sexual orientation; or what religion you practice; or what nation you are from. The Civil Rights Act protects you as an employee from discrimination in the workplace.

Source: New York Times, "Civil Rights Act Protects Gay Workers, Appeals Court Rules," Alan Feuer and Benjamin Weiser, Feb. 26, 2018

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