Bathroom Predator Myth Clogs Path for LGBT Discrimination Protection Bill in Florida
Conservatives raised concerns that a bill to ban LGBT discrimination in the workplace would allow 'anatomical males' to use bathrooms for women.

A bill to offer LGBT Floridians protection against workplace discrimination is to come up for another vote today in a state Senate committee after conservatives raised hackles about how, in the words of one Republican lawmaker, “you could have a lot of weirdos doing weird things in bathrooms.” The bill is the first in a decade to even reach a vote in the Senate Judiciary committee, which deadlocked 6-6 on SB 120 Monday following a contentious debate, the Orlando Sentinel reports. 

Lawmakers engaged in two hours of heated debate, tossing around such phrases as “anatomical male” and “male parts,” which are not in any way mentioned in the bill, which would ban employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The bill has the support of numerous large corporations, which see it as beneficial to Florida’s business climate.



7 Women Open Up About Workplace Discrimination

Complainer. Troublemaker. Difficult. Overly sensitive. Bitch. It’s hard for a lot of women to speak up against workplace discrimination because we fear we’ll be called these ugly names, marginalized, or passed over for future opportunities. We worry we’ll lose our jobs, or worse. We second-guess our gut reactions and wonder, is it just me?

Transgender pilots will now be free to fly in the US
Jessica Taylor, a pilot for a Denver regional airline, was victorious after a battle with the Federal Aviation Administration to prove she was just as qualified to fly an aircraft as any trained person who has not transitioned.

I found that gender can mean the difference between captains believing you are qualified or not to fly the aircraft,’ she said, according to MPR News. ‘Over the past few years, many transgender individuals have lost their medical certification due to these outdated practices and policies, while also facing discrimination by the FAA.’

The FAA would previously require pilots to submit results of psychological testing every year in order to be considered to fly in the US. If you failed, you couldn’t fly. But now being transgender is no longer considered a mental illness, the FAA will allow trans pilots to fly planes without undergoing a time-consuming and expensive appeal process to prove they’re fit and able.

While this is a huge step forward for aviation, it has a caveat. The new policy will require additional paperwork and testing if a pilot has been treated with hormone therapy or had gender reassignment surgery less than five years ago.

Transgender woman wins $115,000 in settlement after workplace discrimination
Britney Austin had alleged her employer used slurs, denied her access to the women's restroom, and refused to change her name on company records.
By Dominic Holden

Britney Austin, a trans woman from Arizona, will receive $115,000 and a formal apology from her former employer, which discriminated against her when she began her transition in 2011.

At Britney’s former workplace, Deluxe Financial Services, Inc., she says her coworkers and managers used anti-trans slurs and barred her from using the bathroom corresponding with her gender identity. They also refused to change her name in the company’s records, saying that they couldn’t do so unless she had gender confirmation surgery – which her company’s health insurance wouldn’t cover. Then, she was denied severance when she was laid off. 

Beyond a cash settlement, the Minnesota-based company provides other concessions in the agreement. Among them, Deluxe agreed to remove all transgender exclusions in its health care plan and let transgender employees to use restrooms “commensurate with their gender identity.”

In an apology to Austin, which was included with the settlement agreement, Deluxe Financial Services senior vice president of human resources Julie Loosbrock writes, “We want to ensure you that we have made changes to our internal policies, including how we treat transgender employees’ requests to change biographical information or use a restroom commensurate with their gender identity.”

The apology continues: “The company has changed its policies to ensure that transgender employees may use a restroom commensurate with their gender identity, that the company will promptly correct that employee’s sex designation and name in our internal records and systems, and that we will take hostile comments based on sex- stereotyping seriously, investigate them, and take prompt corrective and remedial action.”

Damn right. One more noteworthy quote from attorney Jillian T. Weiss, cited in the article: “Discrimination against transgender employees is illegal under federal law everywhere in the United States. This case adds to the growing number of EEOC victories with the same conclusion.”
Ireland Bans Discrimination Against LGBT Teachers
Supporters say this removes the ‘chill factor’ for LGBT employees of schools in Ireland, where almost all schools are religiously run.

Ireland’s Parliament has passed a bill banning religious schools from discriminating against LGBT teachers, reported Gay Star News. With Wednesday’s passage in the House and the previous approval of the Senate, the bill is now on the desk of Ireland’s president for signing.

The bill amends Section 37 of the republic’s Employment Equality Act, which allowed schools and hospitals to “take action” to prevent employees from “undermining the religious ethos of the institution.” The Gay and Lesbian Equality Network said this section of the law had a “chilling effect” in religious schools.

Montana governor signs executive order to protect LGBT state employees
Gov. Steve Bullock's order will prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity for state workers.

Earlier this week, Montana’s Gov. Steve Bullock signed an executive order that bans state workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. He made the announcement on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. 

The order expands prohibitions against discrimination to also include pregnancy and military service, reports the Associated Press.

The executive order goes into effect immediately, and will protect state workers, contractors, and subcontractors from discrimination in employment as well as provision of government services. It also calls for diversity programs designed to prevent harassment.

The Democratic politician added, “while an executive order applies to state government only, I encourage private businesses to examine their policies as well.”

Montana! What up! 


C: When someone tells me that I need to change my name and straighten my hair for a job, this is what I’m hearing, “I don’t like you or your culture. The consumers are normal people of America and your culture may scare them off, causing me to lose money. Black culture isn’t marketable. Black culture is unapproachable. Black culture is unprofessional. Please be white. Or at least as white as you can be. ”
Gillian Anderson was only paid ‘half’ Duchovny’s pay for ‘X-Files’ reunion
“I’m surprised that more [interviewers] haven’t brought that up because it’s the truth.”

TW: ableist language, swearing

X-Files star Gillian Anderson recently discussed the gender pay gap, claiming she was only offered “half” the pay of costar David Duchovny for the show’s six-part reunion. Anderson told The Daily Beast that when the show first premiered, she was told to literally stand behind Duchovny during scenes.

“I can only imagine that at the beginning, they wanted me to be the sidekick,” she said. “Or that, somehow, maybe it was enough of a change just to see a woman having this kind of intellectual repartee with a man on camera, and surely the audience couldn’t deal with actually seeing them walk side by side! I have such a knee-jerk reaction to that stuff, a very short tolerance for that shit… I don’t know how long it lasted or if it changed because I eventually said, ‘Fuck no! No!’ I don’t remember somebody saying, ‘OK, now you get to walk alongside him.’ But I imagine it had more to do with my intolerance and spunk than it being an allowance that was made.”

Anderson says she faced the pay gap a second time when negotiating her pay for the series revival, which is debuting this month. She claims she was offered “half” the pay of Duchovny.

“I’m surprised that more [interviewers] haven’t brought that up because it’s the truth,” Anderson says. “Especially in this climate of women talking about the reality of [unequal pay] in this business, I think it’s important that it gets heard and voiced. It was shocking to me, given all the work that I had done in the past to get us to be paid fairly. I worked really hard toward that and finally got somewhere with it. Even in interviews in the last few years, people have said to me, ‘I can’t believe that happened, how did you feel about it, that is insane.’ And my response always was, ‘That was then, this is now.’ And then it happened again! I don’t even know what to say about it. It is… sad. It is sad.”

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Anderson and Duchovny were ultimately paid the same amount for the series return.