Ohio’s school districts have long recognized the requirement not to discriminate against employees on the basis of certain protected classes. Discrimination related to pregnancy, childbirth or maternity/parental leave constitutes discrimination on the basis of sex. Schools have to treat a woman who is temporarily disabled due to pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions the same as any other disabled employee.
On March 7, a Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals panel held that employers cannot discriminate against employees based on their transgender or transitioning status, notwithstanding the employer’s sincere religious objections.
With less than a month remaining in the current term, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered an opinion on Monday that could have potential employment implications for Ohio school districts.
In EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, a clothing store declined to hire Samantha Elauf, a 17-year-old Muslim, because a religious headscarf that she wore to her interview conflicted with Abercrombie’s employee dress code policy.