Faelan Grimm, a former custodian at McLean County Unit 5, has filed a federal lawsuit against the district. She alleges discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation. Grimm claims that slurs were used against her, and other sexually offensive comments were made. When she reported this behavior to supervisors, no investigations ensued.
The complaint requests back pay along with compensatory and punitive damages. Attorneys Chad W. Eisenback and Nathan Volheim of Atlas Consumer Law believe their client is entitled to damages because she was denied the right to an equal workplace experience.
According to the lawyers, “No employee should be harassed or discriminated against on the basis of their sex, race, or other protected class. Ms. Grimm deserved equality. We will continue to fight for Ms. Grimm and other employees that share similar stories.”
Unit 5 denies the allegations and is filing a motion to dismiss.
Title VII and Sexual Orientation
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, and sex. For many years, federal courts interpreted the "sex" discrimination clause as only prohibiting discrimination between men and women. However, in recent years, there has been a shift in interpretation to include sexual orientation and gender expression as well.
The Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County (2020) held that Title VII does protect employees from discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. In other words, an employer cannot fire or refuse to hire someone because they are gay or transgender. The ruling also protects employees from harassment based on these criteria.
Overall, Title VII now provides legal protection against sexual orientation-based discrimination in the workplace and serves as an important tool for promoting equality and inclusion for all employees regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
Atlas Consumer Law Stands Ready to Help
Our firm specializes in consumer protection. We work to help clients who have been victims of unfair or abusive business practices. Our team works tirelessly to ensure that clients receive fair treatment under the law and are not taken advantage of by businesses looking to profit at their expense.
In our case against McLean County Unit 5, we are making three essential claims.
- sexual orientation-based harassment
- sexual orientation-based discrimination
We will not stand by and allow someone to be mocked or denigrated for their immutable traits, especially when the law offers them special protections.
Our firm is ready to put our skills to work for you, too. If you’ve suffered workplace harassment, contact our office, and tell us your story. We may be able to work on your case right away, and we will not rest until you see justice.
For a free consultation, call us at (312) 313-1613 or contact us online.