Library of Congress Sued for Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation & Retaliation

A former auditor for the Library of Congress has filed a lawsuit against the library and his former boss, claiming he was fired after his boss discovered he was gay. The plaintiff claims he was “subjected to a hostile work environment for more than a year” and had the religious beliefs of his boss forced upon him. Plaintiff was an up-and-coming auditor for the Library of Congress’s inspector general’s office. His boss liked him so much that he tried to set him up with his single daughter. Based on Plaintiff’s allegations, when the boss discovered that Plaintiff was gay, he harassed him with religious-based homophobia, which included quoting him biblical passages condemning homosexuality. Plaintiff’s treatment got worst after he complained to the EEOC, and he was eventually fired by the same supervisor. Plaintiff is seeking reinstatement, as well as back pay and compensatory and punitive damages. Since federal law does not include sexual orientation within the protection of Title VII of the U.S. Civil Rights Act, Plaintiff is claiming discrimination based on “sex stereotyping” – a claim arising from Title VII’s prohibition on discrimination based on “sex.” Unlike the federal law, California anti-discrimination laws provide full protection to the members of the gay and lesbian community by explicitly prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation. These protections apply both in the place of employment, and in the community at large. For the full story, See Lisa Rein, The Washington Post, 08/22/2012, at The Washington Post.