The Utah legislature passed a law, SB 296, that bars discrimination in employment and housing based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The Mormon Church supports this law because it contains extensive religious exemptions. Interestingly, the Utah law defines “Gender identity” as having the meaning provided in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5). Apparently, Utah does not know that the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual no longer defines “gender identity.” The new diagnosis is “gender dysphoria.” Accordingly, it is unclear how courts and regulators will apply this definition.
SB 296 further provides that employers may adopt reasonable rules and policies that designate sex-specific facilities, including restrooms, shower facilities, and dressing facilities, provided that the employer’s rules and policies adopted under this section afford reasonable accommodations based on gender identity to all employees.