Federal fair employment laws prohibit employment practices that discriminate based on age, race, color, gender, national origin, religion, and disability. The laws also prohibit employers from retaliating against employees who file discrimination complaints.
Gender stereotypes. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that discrimination against a transgender employee because of her gender nonconformity is sex discrimination that violates the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution (Glenn v. Brumby, 663 F.3d 1312 (11th Cir. 2011)). In this case, a transgender woman, who had been hired as a man, was fired from her job with the Georgia Legislature because her supervisor considered it "inappropriate" for her to appear at work dressed as a woman. In ruling for the employee, the court pointed out that several circuit courts have ruled that discrimination based on gender stereotypes is sex discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The court noted that a person is defined as transgender "precisely because of the perception that his or her behavior transgresses gender stereotypes."