U.S. Supreme Court Issues Landmark Ruling on LGBTQ Protections

June.16.2020

The U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision this week strengthening workplace protections for LGBTQ employees sided with the arguments an Orrick team raised in an amicus brief on behalf of 59 civil rights organizations that emphasized the racial justice implications of the case.

Partner Danny Rubens led the amicus effort for the civil rights coalition, which was headed by the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The Supreme Court’s ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County found that employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or transgender status is impermissible under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Importantly, in arguing that LGBTQ discrimination is unlawful under the Act, our team approached the issue before the court from a racial justice perspective, noting that LGBTQ people of color are particularly vulnerable to workplace discrimination. “The LGBTQ community, particularly LGBTQ people of color, are often subjected to workplace discrimination and harassment, resulting in lower job security and economic stability,” the Lawyers’ Committee said in a statement. “The Supreme Court reinforced that such discrimination has no place in our workplaces and in our society.”

Litigation Daily cited us among “a stellar crop of amicus briefs” filed in the case.

In addition to Danny, associate Ethan Fallon and former associate Samuel Harbourt contributed to the amicus effort.