Transexual Job Applicant Gets Green Light for Discrimination Suit

December 31, 2007 (PLANSPONSOR.COM) - A federal judge in the District of Columbia has cleared the way for a transsexual job applicant to pursue an employment discrimination suit after not being hired for a federal job.

U.S. District Judge James Robertson of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued the ruling in a case involving an applicant who applied for a Congressional Research Service (CRS) job in 2004. The applicant applied as a man and was offered a position, but was ultimately rejected when the applicant made clear an intent to change his name and begin presenting himself as a woman.

The plaintiff, now known as Diane Schroer, alleged in her lawsuit that the CRS switched its decision on her employment application because she did not conform to the interviewer’s perception of women.

“Title VII is violated when an employer discriminates against any employee, transsexual or not, because he or she has failed to act or appear sufficiently masculine or feminine enough for an employer,” Robertson said, in denying a motion to dismiss the complaint.

Schroer’s lawsuit   partly based its claim on a 1989 Supreme Court case which allowed a discrimination case by a woman who was perceived by her employer as too “macho.”

The ruling in Schroer v. Billington, D.D.C., No. 05-1090 (JR) (Nov. 28, 2007 is here .