Ramirez v. Barnes & Noble ‏@TransLawCenter @krishayashi @BNBuzz (USA)

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Tyson Ramirez worked at Barnes & Noble for years as a man without complaint; indeed, he received exemplary comments for his performance. However, when he decided to identify as a woman named Victoria, he was subjected to discriminatory treatment and ultimately fired. As a result. Ramirez is suing Barnes & Noble.

Ramirez claims that she was not allowed to wear women’s clothing, discuss her transition with her co-workers, use female pronouns to identify herself or use the women’s restroom. She claims to have suffered on-going panic attacks and severe anxiety from the work pressures, and when she told her manager she couldn’t hide who she was any longer, she was fired.

“The law is clear: no one should be targeted for humiliation and harassment at work and ultimately lose their job because of who they are,” says Kris Hayashi, executive director of the Transgender Law Center, in a statement. “It’s unacceptable for any employee to go through what Victoria experienced at Barnes & Noble, and it’s particularly disturbing given the public image the company has cultivated around its support for LGBT people.”

Ramirez’s lawyers cite Title VII, the federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in employment and has been widely interpreted in recent years by courts and federal agencies to protect transgender employees, and California law, which includes an explicit prohibition of discrimination based on gender identity or gender expression.

We hope Ramirez wins, as firing a person for transgender status is bad public policy.

Ramirez v. Barnes and Noble

Trans woman suing Barnes and Noble for discrimination · PinkNews

Victoria Ramirez, Fired Transgender Worker at Irvine Barnes & Noble, Sues for Discrimination _ OC Weekly

9 thoughts on “Ramirez v. Barnes & Noble ‏@TransLawCenter @krishayashi @BNBuzz (USA)

  1. I argue that this lawsuit is in violation of Title VII and other civil rights law by perpetuating offensive sex stereotypes.

    The lawsuit repeatedly uses the phrase, “present as a woman”. For example, “Despite PLAINTIFF’s continued request….allow her to “present as a woman”.

    How does one “present as a woman”? Please explain “present as a woman” to me without resorting to sex stereotypes. It’s similar to saying “present as a black person”. Or, “present as Asian”. Today at work, I plan to “present as an African American”. I have no black ancestry in my family tree that I’m aware of, and I don’t even look black. I will put on black face and buy some watermelon. Next week, I’ll buy some moccasins and “present as Native”.

    Ramirez claims that she was not allowed to:

    wear women’s clothing

    (Doesn’t this person mean clothes stereotypically considered “women’s clothing”?)

    discuss her transition with her co-workers,

    use female pronouns to identify herself

    (He can refer to himself anyway he wants, but why do other employees have to agree with him? )

    or use the women’s restroom

    Female employees have a fundamental human right to privacy.

    “Ramirez’s lawyers cite Title VII, the federal law that prohibits sex discrimination.”

    Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a federal law that prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, and religion.

    As I understand it, from a historical perspective, Title VII clearly meant sex as in biological sex. This individual is not claiming discrimination based on sex. It’s obvious that he is claiming gender identity. Gender identity is not the same things as sex. Or, is the federal government saying that biological sex doesn’t exist? We know this isn’t true. Why is “sex” under Title VII the only protected category of persons that can have two different meanings.

    Can race mean entirely two different things under Title VII? That is, race based on family ancestry and physical characteristics, and race based on nothing more than personal self-identification?

    By referring to himself as “she” and using female pronouns and dressing in stereotypical “feminine” manner, he is promoting offensive sex stereotypes. How does he know he is a “woman”? He is a “woman” because he dresses and thinks in a certain manner.

    I do believe that non-traditional males who aren’t stereotypically “masculine” can claim “sex discrimination”, but only if they are non-traditional and still maintain that they are men. Otherwise, they are perpetuating sex stereotypes.

  2. The lawsuit does state that having to use the restroom for males (he is male, and probably still has his penis) caused this individual anxiety. Females that are forced to share a restroom with a male can also be emotionally triggered. Why is his anxiety more important than the emotions of female employees?

    “We hope Ramirez wins, as firing a person for transgender status is bad public policy”.

    Do I think he should have been fired? Not necessarily, but he has no business in the women’s restroom. He is not a “woman”, and no one should be forced to call him a “woman”.

    The lawsuit also claims disability and appears to be asking for a Reasonable Accommodation.

    As I understand it, gender identity does not fall under the ADA. Panic disorder and anxiety might, but any female employee who has a history of sexual assault or rape could also ask for a Reasonable Accommodation stating that having to share a restroom with a biological male would exacerbate panic disorder and PTSD. How many women have PTSD because of rape or sexual assault? Women aren’t raped or sexually assaulted by a “gender identity”. They have PTSD because they were raped by a male bodied person. Why is his panic disorder more important than a female employee’s panic disorder?

    “We hope Ramirez wins, as firing a person for transgender status is bad public policy.”

    This involves more than “transgender status” whatever this is supposed to mean? It involves the fundamental right of privacy of female employees who shouldn’t be forced to share restrooms with males.

  3. Ms. Brennan, are you deleting my posts because they don’t show up? If you don’t want anyone to respond, why do you even take the time to post these articles?

  4. Ms. Brennan, could you please explain to me what “presenting as a woman” means without resorting to sex stereotypes. The lawsuit uses this phrase several times.

    Question:

    Has anyone done a study to see how males “transitioning” in the workplace impacts the workplace as a whole, and female employees in particular. The truth is no one really knows how it effects women. If a female employee works with a male for 10 years of longer, do people really believe that she isn’t going to notice when he starts using the women’s restroom. She knows he is male, and this is how she will instinctually react when he is in the women’s restroom. If a male coworker started using the women’s restroom, this could be construed as sexual harassment because this is creating a hostile and uncomfortable environment for female employees.

    It’s as if it’s all about his needs, and he is the only person working for the company. Women are essentially rendered invisible.

    There is also the issue of compiling accurate labor statistics. For example, if a male in a supervisorial position decides after 20 or 30 years of employment that he is a “woman”, for the purposes of collecting data, how is this individual listed? So, we could have situation whereby most of the managerial positions are listed as “women”, but none, are actual females.

    No matter how we look at it, women are losing rights. Stop denying it.

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