Transgender, bathroom, locker room, employment, discrimination, law


This article examines the current legal battles over transgender bathroom, locker room, and employment rights. In the recent years, there has been a major uproar surrounding the rights of transgender individuals; concurrently, our country is witnessing a shift in the ways in which individuals understand their gender outside of the binary male and female classification. While the word transgender can serve as an “umbrella term encompassing a wide array of identifies,” transgender rights have steadily grown across numerous areas (Buck, 2016, p. 465). However, there have been contentious legal issues that have put transgender individuals rights in the spotlight.

The author examines Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Fourteenth Amendment. Additionally, the sociocultural risk factors, mental health issues, and medical concerns that transgender individuals face are examined. An ethical analysis is conducted to better understand the ethical quagmire of bathroom, locker room, and employment discrimination for transgender individuals. Lastly, four legal cases are expounded upon: Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins (1989), Johnston v. University of Pittsburgh of the Commonwealth System of Higher Education (2015), G.G. v. Gloucester County School Board (2016), and Whitaker v. Kenosha Unified School District (2017). While enormous progress has been made, transgender people continue to traverse many complex systems in order to navigate everyday life. As we witness evolving social and legal strides for transgender individuals, further legislation involving transgender rights is warranted. Implications for social work practice is discussed.

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