Boston, Mass. – June 15, 2020 – Boston Pride is pleased that the Supreme Court made this important decision to protect the rights of LGBTQ+ workers. This year, the Supreme Court, which now has a 5-4 conservative tilt, has heard arguments on several cases relating to LGBTQ+ rights. The Supreme Court ruling released today marks one clear win for the LGBTQ+ community.
Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex. The question before the Supreme Court was whether “sex” includes gender identity and sexual orientation. The court decided by a 6-3 vote that Title VII encompasses bias against LGBT workers. This ruling affirms continued protection in states that have extended civil rights protections for LGBTQ+ people. It also impact LGBTQ+ in states without current protections.
Members of the LGBTQ+ community deserve to have their rights protected and chief among those rights is to ensure that they will be able to make a living and remain employed, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The Supreme Court’s decision is an authoritative message that LGBTQ+ individuals should not have their livelihoods threatened by bigotry and hate.
We still await the Court’s decisions on the remaining cases related to LGBTQ+ rights. As is evident by the persistent acts of unjust police violence against Black individuals and communities, it is important to remember that civil rights protections do not necessarily dismantle systems of institutionalized racism, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia. Our work is far from over. We cannot claim a total victory until we know that all of the members of our community are protected in the workplace.