Supreme Court Rules on Landmark Civil Rights Case

June 2020

On June 15, 2020, the Supreme Court delivered a landmark civil rights ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, holding that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects gay and transgender workers.  Writing for the majority, Justice Gorsuch’s opinion states:  “Congress adopted broad language making it illegal for an employer to rely on an employee’s sex when deciding to fire that employee.  We do not hesitate to recognize today a necessary consequence of that legislative choice: An employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender defies the law.”
Williams & Connolly filed an amicus curiae brief in the case on behalf of small business coalitions supporting the LGBTQ plaintiffs.  The amicus brief urged the Court to hold that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act – which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin – extends to sexual orientation and transgender status, and argued that protections for LGBT workers advance not only employees’ security and satisfaction, but also businesses’ bottom lines.  Amici are business organizations with members that collectively represent tens of thousands of businesses nationwide.  The team representing the business organizations includes Colette Connor, Amanda Cox, Brian Hagerty, Michael Mestitz, and Lisa Blatt.

Click here to read the Supreme Court’s opinion in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia.
Click here to read Williams & Connolly’s business organizations amicus brief.
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