Victims of LGBTQ workplace discrimination in Texas, contrary to popular conception, do, in fact, have the right to fair employment practices regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation. However, such types of discrimination are unfortunately still rampant within the state.
In addition to being vulnerable to workplace discrimination, LGBTQ community members in Texas may also be subject to employee retaliation, which is also illegal under state law. Knowing your rights can protect against these kinds of harassment following a report of workplace discrimination.
What Texas law says about LGBTQ workplace discrimination
LGBTQ rights in Texas, including within the context of employment, have long been contentious. Although Texas law doesn’t contain any law explicitly outlawing discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, a recent ruling from a Texas judge asserts that state law protects against workplace discrimination on that basis.
In the case, the judge ruled that “the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act includes protections for sexual orientation and gender identity.” This means that LGBTQ victims of workplace discrimination now have legal grounds to pursue justice under the Act.
Widespread discrimination against LGBTQ workers in the United States
The fight to end employment discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation is a national issue, not just in Texas. The findings of one recent survey found that “nearly 1 in 10 LGBTQ people in the United States experienced workplace discrimination in the last year.”
The only definitive way to stop this disturbing trend, in addition to changing the culture, is to hold employers accountable for not protecting their workers from these types of discrimination. That means, among other strategies, pursuing justice in the court of law as well as in the court of public opinion.
If you are a member of the LGBTQ community in Texas, you should know that state law now extends important workplace protections against discrimination of any kind.