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New Federal LGBTQ Workplace Policies

By Charlotte Robinson, May 01, 2024

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has updated longstanding guidance on workplace harassment to align with the 2020 Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Bostock v. Clayton County. This means that sex-based harassment which is already prohibited under federal law includes mistreatment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. This will provide our LGBTQ community with better legal protections against instances of physical assault due to their sexual orientation or gender identity, forced outing, intentional misgendering & even workplace policies denying them access to a bathroom or other sex-segregated facility consistent with their gender identity. Kelley Robinson, HRC President stated, “Workplace harassment can so easily be devastating to LGBTQ+ people, whether it comes from managers or peers or others on the job. This mistreatment can vary greatly & it’s especially prevalent in the form of intentional misgendering or deadnaming for transgender & nonbinary people. Combined with the difficulties that many LGBTQ+ people have in finding employment, members of our community can feel trapped in cycles of harassment with no options to get away from it. This new EEOC guidance should make it clear to all employers: they have an obligation to provide a workplace free from harassment for all employees – without exception.” Workplace harassment & discrimination are major concerns for members of our LGBTQ community. Research shows that U.S. employees are 4.5 times more likely to want to work at a company if it publicly supports & demonstrates a commitment to expanding & protecting LGBTQ rights. On the flipside research shows that more than 52% of Gen Z & millennials who were dissatisfied with their employers that didn’t support workplace equality leave their job within 2 years. 

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