DOJ Will Not Appeal Transgender Discrimination Decision

The Department of Justice chose not to appeal a decision in which a US District Judge ruled that the Library of Congress violated the Civil Rights Act in the case of Diane Schroer, a transgender woman, whose job offer from the Library of Congress was rescinded when she announced she was transitioning. The deadline for appealing the decision (see PDF) was Tuesday, according to the Associated Press.

US District Judge James Robertson awarded Schroer nearly $500,000 in back pay and damages in the September 2008 decision. At the time, Judge Robertson noted that Schroer was clearly qualified for the job and had received the highest interview score out of 18 applicants for the position. The Department of Justice under George W. Bush had argued in the case that discrimination against transgender individuals was not illegal under the Civil Rights Act, which prohibits sex discrimination, according to the Associated Press.

In a statement, Schroer said, “I am grateful that the court took the time to examine the case in detail and come to a fair and unbiased decision. In that same light, I am gratified that the current administration saw this for what it was, a case of sex discrimination focused against transgender people, and recognized that it must end in this country.”

Schroer’s suit originated when a job offer to be a terrorism research analyst at the Library of Congress’ Congressional Research Service was rescinded. According to the Washington Post, Schroer, a former U.S Army colonel, was offered the job in December 2004 only to have the offer rescinded when she told her employer she was in the process of transitioning.


Associated Press 7/1/09; Washington Post 8/20/08; Feminist Daily News Wire 9/22/08; ACLU Press Release 7/1/09

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