Federal Agencies Overstepped By Giving Trans Women The Same Legal Status As Biological Women
Federal judge enjoins EEOC and U.S. Dept. of Education from forcing employers, colleges, schools, etc. to open female activities and spaces (i.e. bathrooms) to trans who identify as female
U.S. District Judge Charles Edward Atchley Jr. of the Eastern District of Tennessee enjoined the EEOC and the U.S. Dept. of Education (DOE) from implementing agency guidelines that far exceed the scope of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2020 ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County.
Bostock holds that employers violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 when they fire a worker based on homosexuality or transgender status.
Meanwhile, the same coalition of attorney generals from 20 states who filed the lawsuit filed another lawsuit Tuesday challenging a U.S. Department of Agriculture school meal program that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery said the agriculture department requirement misconstrues federal antidiscrimination laws.
Judge Atchley ruled the Supreme Court expressly narrowed the scope of Bostock to Title VII and did not purport to address “bathrooms, locker rooms, [dress codes] or anything else of the kind” or any other federal or state law.
The consequential July 15 ruling was ignored by many national media outlets.
Judge Atchley issued a preliminary injunction that goes into effect in 20 states that are plaintiffs in the lawsuit: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and West Virginia. He declined to issue a nationwide injunction.
However, the ruling may have national impact because the guidances in question are issued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) and apply nationwide.
The EEOC and DOE essentially require that trans people who identify as female be accorded the same legal protections as biological females and cannot be barred from activities and spaces formerly reserved for biological females.
Biden Got The Ball Rolling
President Joe Biden cited Bostock on his first day in office in 2021 when he issued an executive order declaring that laws that prohibit sex discrimination also prohibit discrimination the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation. The EEOC and the DOE responded to Biden’s order with “guidance documents” that said laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of “sex” also prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ people.
The upshot: Biden’s executive order and the EEOC / DOE rules sparked social change nationwide, despite lacking any legal foundation.
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