Tag Archives: law

States protecting sex segregation and gender identity at the same time!

For the record, I am sharing an excerpt from the gender identity laws state chart that I posted on this site in 2013. These are states in which gender identity laws have already been passed, yet protection for certain forms of sex-segregation is also explicitly allowed by the same or a related statute. This differs […]

Direct replacement of ‘sex’ with ‘gender’ in U.S. passport and Social Security policies

At the federal level, it is possible to change sex on both your Social Security card and United States passport documents. The policies currently in effect require only a physician or psychiatrist’s attestation of “appropriate clinical treatment” (Social Security Administration) or “gender-related care” (U.S. passports). In both cases, the terminology of gender is used in […]

(G)ENDA back up for a vote in the Senate

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) has been introduced to Congress numerous times, and is up for a Senate vote again, but has thus far failed to be enshrined in law. Currently, there is no federal employment protection for gay, lesbian, and trans-identified people: we can be fired simply for being homosexual or gender non-compliant. These […]

A disparate impact analysis of gender’s social liability

A lot of people think gender is really cool. They might celebrate gender “diversity.” Or they might believe that legal protection for “gender identity” and “gender expression” is a fundamental human right because it is a shortcut for deconstructing sex stereotypes–it’s not. But at the very least, most people view gender as neutral. Harmless, really. […]

CHART! “Gender Identity” laws by state: definitions, citations, contexts

I made this excel spreadsheet of “gender identity” anti-discrimination legislation almost a year ago.  I have hesitated to share it on the internet because there are surely errors (in the weblinks and citations if nothing else) and because IT SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON FOR LEGAL RESEARCH. But still, it’s pretty sweet and helps frame […]

DELAWARE joins MA and CT with “improper purpose” limitation on “gender identity” protections

Delaware joined 16 other US states this week by passing anti-discrimination protections for “gender identity.” The good news is that some reasonable limitations were added by eleventh hour amendment to the legislation. The central problem with “gender identity” legislation is still implicated by the definition itself because it directly overrides sex and is self-referential (gender is gender). Let’s take […]

Sex discrimination as legal strategy

Sex discrimination demands particular kinds of behavior from one sex, but prohibits the same behavior from the other sex.[i] For example, wearing dresses is ok, but only for females; engaging in sexual relations with females is ok, but only for males. Legal prohibition against sex discrimination encompasses the social policing of both homosexuality[ii] and sex-role (or gender) […]

STRANGE BEDFELLOWS? SEX, RELIGION, AND TRANSGENDER IDENTITY UNDER TITLE VII (excerpt)

This is an excerpt of Sue Landsittel’s article Strange Bedfellows? Sex, Religion, and Transgender Identity Under Title VII, 104 NW. U. L. REV. 1147 (2010). The full article can be read here. ____________________________________________________ IV. TALKING ABOUT “SEX” LIKE RELIGION Cases like Smith and Schroer demonstrate that courts are beginning to read Title VII in a more transgender-protective way. In doing so, […]

Improper purpose, an introduction to the concept.

The language of “gender identity” legislation is fraught with confusion. The complexity of issues swirling around reproductive sex and its connection (or lack thereof) to gender requires extreme attention to terminology and a delicate balancing of interests. Feminist legal critique demands that women’s need for sex-segregated boundaries be both recognized and weighed against the violent enforcement […]

“It is inaccurate to conflate sexual orientation with gender nonconformity, and such semantic sloppiness has no place in the law…”

These are the wise words of Ilona Turner, Legal Director of the Transgender Law Center, from her 2007 law review article entitled Sex Stereotyping Per Se: Transgender Employees and Title VII (95 Cal. L. Rev. 561 (2007)). I must admit, I whole-heartedly agree. Just as it is inaccurate to use “gender identity” as a replacement for sex, homosexuality […]