Transgender employees will be protected from workplace discrimination in the public sector, the Department of Justice announced Thursday.
Previously, workplace discrimination laws in the public sector excluded discrimination on the basis of a person’s gender identity, the Justice Department noted.
But Attorney General Eric Holder announced Thursday that the federal government’s views on this issue have “evolved over time.”
“I have determined that the best reading of Title VII’s prohibition of sex discrimination is that it encompasses discrimination based on gender identity, including transgender status,” Holder wrote in a memo to DOJ officials.
Public sector workers who are gay are already protected against discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation.
But the new rules will protect transgender workers, who until now, could be discriminated against on the basis of their gender identity.