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Legal You ask, we answer. with Michael McGonigle Director of Legal Services 12 | KNOW • Volume 12 Issue 1 Did you KNOW? The National Education Association offers a new training program to address safety, bias, and gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) issues. The workshops, which run 90-120 minutes each, are especially designed for people who are not gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, and who are interested in addressing bias regarding sexual orientation and gender identity. Taking a Stand: Creating Safe Schools for ALL Students is an introductory workshop designed for all school personnel. It uses video clips and activities to examine the obvious and subtle ways that bias plays out in schools, and offers resources for creating schools that are safe for all students, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. Walking the Talk: Classroom Resources for Addressing Bias is an advanced workshop designed for K-12 classroom instructors. It examines various approaches to designing and integrating activities into the classroom that raise awareness of bias and empower students to advocate for change, especially around anti-GLBT bias. More than 30 certified trainers in all regions are now available to deliver these workshops at schools and affiliates. For more information or to schedule a training, please contact NEA Human and Civil Rights, 202-822-7700, mail to: hcrinfo@nea.org This training is a program of the National Education Association, in collaboration with the American Federation of Teachers, the NEA Health Information Network, and the Respect for All Project, and is made possible in part by the generous financial contributions of the Gill Foundation, the Liberty Education Fund, and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. Do you have a legal question for our resident expert? Email your question to Mike.McGonigle@ gae.org. Please include your name, contact information, and GAE membership number. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible. For urgent matters, call GAE at 800-282-7142 or contact your GAE UniServ Director. Is discrimination on the basis of gender stereotyping illegal? Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, discrimination on the basis of gender stereotyping is illegal. We’ve pulled together several examples of cases. More than 20 years ago, in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, 490 US. 228 (1989), the United States Supreme Court heard the case of Ann Hopkins, a hardcharging and aggressive manager denied partnership despite outperforming all other candidates in her year. Hopkins was told by her employer that future success at the firm would depend upon her learning to “walk more femininely, talk more femininely, dress more femininely, wear make-up, have her hair styled, and wear jewelry.” The United States Supreme Court ultimately ruled in Hopkins’ favor. In 2010, an Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling reversed a trial judge’s decision and ordered the case Lewis v. Heartland Inns of America ( Jan. 2010) to trial. In that case, Brenna Lewis was a front desk clerk at Heartland Inns in Ankeny, Iowa. She was promoted to the day shift, sight unseen, after enthusiastic recommendations from previous managers. Once on the job, Lewis’ loose-fitting clothing and unisex appearance caused Director of Operations to express reservations about whether she was a “good fit.” Lewis wore short hair, no makeup and sported what they referred to as an “Ellen DeGeneres look.” In the 2000 case of E. E. 0. C. v. Joe’s Stone Crab, Inc., the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals (Georgia, Florida, Alabama) held that Title VII prohibits “the entire spectrum of disparate treatment of men and women resulting from sex stereotypes ... even where the stereotypes are benign or not grounded in group animus.” Therefore, if Joe’s Stone Crab deliberately and systematically excluded women from food server positions based on a sexual stereotype which simply associated “fine-dining ambience” with all-male food service, it then could be found liable under Tide VII for intentional discrimination regardless of whether it also was motivated by ill-will or malice toward women. As you can see, every case is unique. As always, should you have questions or concerns about any legal matter, you should contact your local GAE UniServ Director immediately. Your GAE UD can help you find the answers you need and when necessary -- get you the legal assistance you require. Need Help? Contact GAE ASAP! Your GAE UniServ Director (UD) is trained to provide you with the assistance you need. Your UD can put you in contact with our attorneys—specialists in educator defense. Find contact info for your UD at www.gae.org


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