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Stephanie Jane Hahn, Attorney At Law
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Woman works 14 years and is passed over for full-time employment

When you are the type of person who is looking for more than a job, but instead strive for a career, you put hard work into making sure you are not going to be dispensable to the company. If you have done your part to work toward promotion and you have made that desire for promotion known, it isn't unlikely to expect to be treated as if you are a relevant candidate for other jobs in your field.

One woman felt the same and wanted the courts to hear her. After working for more than a decade with a community college as an instructor, and not ever receiving a single negative evaluation, she alleges that she was repeatedly passed over for promotion to a full-time position and not even acknowledged with an interview after submitting her application for several full-time positions. She alleges this occurred six times and eventually her part-time position was terminated and that it was due to her sexual orientation.

The primary question was whether or not the community college acted in violation of the Civil Rights Act, Title VII and specifically whether sexual orientation discrimination falls into the realm of sexual discrimination. While her case was dismissed in lower trial court, similar cases have been successful in federal district courts and with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. On numerous occasions, it has been demonstrated that Title VII is intended to support the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees.

As it turns out, the U.S. Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal by the lower court and as it stands, employees are not protected from discrimination in the workplace due to their choice of sexual orientation.

It is likely this will be a heavily debated subject until an amendment is made to the Civil Rights Act. Sexual orientation should never figure into your chances for promotion or for tenure at a job in which you successfully perform. If you feel that you have been passed over due to any discrimination, an employment law attorney in Indiana may be able to assist you in bringing the wrong to light and seeing those perpetrating hate held accountable.

Source: IndyStar.com, "Workplaces can discriminate based on sexual orientation, federal judges rule," Madeline Buckley and Amy Bartner, July 29, 2016

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