Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson, together with 17 state attorneys general, last week filed an amicus brief in support of a Georgia lesbian who is suing her employer for discrimination. The brief asks the U.S. Supreme court to weigh in on whether Title VII of the Civil Rights act should apply to sexual orientation.

Jameka Evans was a security guard at Georgia Regional Hospital and according to her lawsuit says that she was discriminated against because she is a lesbian and because she refused to conform to gender stereotypes. Evans and her attorneys have lost their case in lower courts but are appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“Employment discrimination against gay, lesbian, and bisexual workers not only deprives them of important economic opportunities—it also stigmatizes their most intimate relationships and thus ‘diminish[es] their personhood,'” the attorneys general wrote. They argue that because some courts have ruled that Title VII protects LGBTQ employees and others have ruled that it doesn’t, the Supreme Court must resolve this issue. “Because the amici States’ gay, lesbian, and bisexual populations will be exposed to significant harms while the split persists, the States have a substantial interest in this Court’s prompt resolution of the important question presented here.”

Here’s the brief:

Download (PDF, 188KB)

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Andy Birkey
Andy Birkey has written for a number of Minnesota and national publications. He founded Eleventh Avenue South which ran from 2002-2011, wrote for the Minnesota Independent from 2006-2011, the American Independent from 2010-2013. His writing has appeared in The Advocate, The Star Tribune, The Huffington Post, Salon, Cagle News Service, Twin Cities Daily Planet, TheUptake, Vita.mn and much more. His writing on LGBT issues, the religious right and social justice has won awards including Best Beat Reporting by the Online News Association, Best Series by the Minnesota chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and an honorable mention by the Sex-Positive Journalism awards.