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Leyth Jamal Fires Back At Saks Fifth Avenue For Trying To Dismiss Her Claim Of Transphobic Job Discrimination

Leyth Jamal

Transgender woman Leyth O. Jamal suffered intense on-the-job discrimination for being trans while working at Saks Fifth Avenue in Houston, discrimination that was ignored, and when she filed an EEOC complaint she was fired. When she returned with a lawsuit against the store, Saks claimed it had a right to discriminate against trans individuals, a claim that drew scrutiny from the New York Attorney General. While Saks has moved to have the lawsuit dismissed, Jamal and her attorneys have issued a formal refutation, which states in part:

Saks’ contention that Ms. Jamal’s retaliation claim must be dismissed because “no reasonable person” could believe that she was protected from sex discrimination under Title VII fails on its face. Because of prior opinions from this Court, other courts, and the EEOC, Ms. Jamal reasonably believed that she was protected when she filed her complaint.

Saks’ contention that Ms. Jamal has failed to adequately plead a claim for breach of contract also fails on its face. Contrary to Defendant’s representations, Texas law plainly allows for breach of contract claims brought pursuant to an employee handbook where statements therein are sufficiently clear, specific and meaningful.

Ms. Jamal calls out the hypocrisy of Saks' alleged support LGBT rights:

Saks says it supports LGBT rights fully, but they’re forgetting T stands for transgender. It’s contradictory and hurtful to argue in court I have no rights because I’m trans. I’m sure the courts will recognize all the legal authorities saying I do have civil rights.

HRC has suspended its previously high equality index rating for the high-end retailer after its blatant display of transphobia.

'Gay People Shouldn't Have Babies', Grocery Cashier Tells Shocked Couple


UK supermarket chain Tesco has apologised after an employee allegedly told a lesbian couple that gay people “shouldn’t have babies,” reports Pink News.

The incident occurred in Surrey Quays mall in east London on January 3rd.

A cashier at the supermarket is alleged to have made the comments to Natalie Rivans and her girlfriend Helen Embleton about a pregnant woman in the queue in front of them, saying “it’s wrong - gay people shouldn’t have babies.”

When Rivans challenged the employee, she was told “it’s a free country so I can say what I like.”

On the incident, Rivans said:

“I’ve been out and gay for a long time however my partner not so much. This has really upset and stressed her out.

“I’m thoroughly disappointed [and I] feel as though the LGBT family need to know about this.”

According to spokesperson for Tesco, an internal investigation is now underway.

Back in 2013, Tesco caused a storm when it pulled an inflatable gay best friend from its website. The product had been listed with the term "gay" (censored "g*y") and was suggested for recipients between the ages of 3 and 4 years old, although its description deemed it appropriate for bachelorette parties.

Denver Baker Appeals Colorado Civil Rights Commission's Finding That He Discriminated Against Gay Couple

Jack phillips baker denver

Denver baker Jack Phillips has appealed an order from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission (CCRC) requiring him to prepare wedding cakes for same-sex couples, reports ABC News.

In May, the CCRC rejected Phillips’ appeal of a judge’s earlier ruling that he “unlawfully discriminated against a gay couple by refusing to sell them a wedding cake” in 2012.

Phillips has said that making the cake would violate the Christian principles by which he runs his business.

Phillips' attorneys say that the decision violates the baker’s First Amendment rights.

Earlier this month we reported that a bakery in Northern Ireland could face legal action from The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland for refusing to take an order for a cake with the slogan “support gay marriage.”

Watch a Fox News report on the Phillips case, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Denver Baker Appeals Colorado Civil Rights Commission's Finding That He Discriminated Against Gay Couple" »

Target Issues Statement Addressing Its Recent Questionable Donations

Target Corp. found themselves under the financial microscope once again, after it was revealed yesterday that they donated $50,000 dollars to the Republican Governors Association, a PAC that has spent over $3 million campaigning for anti-gay Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli in Virginia. Some, including Right Wing Watch, claimed that the donation was "indirect support" for Cuccinelli, who has an extensive history of homophobic remarks.

Now, Target Corp. has released a statement to The Advocate, in an attempt to put these recent concerns to rest. Molly Snyder of Target Communications insisted that the funds must "not be used for any individual electoral campaigns or other electioneering efforts."

"Target has a long-standing commitment to the LGBT community. We also believe strongly in our civic responsibility to engage in a bipartisan manner at the state and federal level in order to learn about public policy priorities and advocate on issues that affect our business, such as fairness legislation," stated Snyder. "One of the ways we do this is through membership in both the Democratic and Republican Governors Associations, both of which include several hundred other corporate members. When paying for our memberships, we explicitly require that our dues not be used for any individual electoral campaigns or other electioneering efforts. It would therefore be wrong and inaccurate to associate our membership dues with any particular political candidate or campaign."

So far, no one has yet been able to independently confirm this claim. 

Target In Hot Water Again After Donating $50K To PAC Supporting Anti-Gay Ken Cuccinelli

Target Anti-gayMany probably still remember the ensuing controversy when it was revealed in 2010 that Target Corporation donated $150,000 to a PAC that supported homophobic Minnesota gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer. The company subsequently revised its corporate giving policies, and even launched a series of Gay Pride shirts in an attempt to restore its gay-friendly reputation. Unfortunately, it looks as though the company will have to conduct more damage-control, since Right Wing Watch is reporting that the company "contributed $50,000 to the Republican Governors Association, which so far this year has spent nearly $3 million on behalf of [Ken] Cuccinelli’s gubernatorial campaign." Towleroad readers may remember Cuccinelli as the homophobic attorney general from Virginia with an extensive history of homophobic remarks, and who wishes to reinstate a "Crimes Against Nature Law" in the state.

Target protestIt is worth noting that Target Corp. also made the same donation to the Democratic Governors Association, which is throwing its weight behind Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe. Right Wing Watch referred to the move as "equal opportunity influence-buy[ing]." Nevertheless, this indirect support of such a fiercely anti-gay candidate does call into question a previous promise by CEO Gregg Steinhafel to promote “a dialogue focused on diversity and inclusion in the workplace, including GLBT issues," or a statement made last year by the company that it is “100 percent committed to the goal of families being respected in all communities including parents who happen to be LGBT."

This year, Target Corp. scored a perfect 100 on the HRC's Corporate Equality Index, a grade that will almost certainly suffer as a result of this donation. Thus far, the retail giant has yet to release a statement or comment addressing this most recent controversial donation. 

Toronto Sears Has Gay Pride


It appears at least one Canadian Sears location is feeling the gay pride. One wonders if One Million Moms, the group quixotically boycotting gay-friendly JCPenney, will cross the border to vent their hateful rage.

(h/t JMG)


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