AMA President Dr. Patrice Harris calls on Supreme Court to protect workers from anti-LGBTQ discrimination

American Medical Association President Patrice Harris, MD, urged the U.S. Supreme Court to "do the right thing" as it considers a decision on whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act protects workers based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

"As physicians, and as leaders in medicine, we must always be vigilant and protect our patients from discrimination, ensuring that medicine remains a safe and welcoming place for all," Dr. Harris wrote in an op-ed for The Advocate, an LGBT magazine.

Title VII prohibits discrimination of workers based on sex, race, religion and national origin. At issue is whether "sex" applies to sexual orientation or gender identity. Currently no federal law expressly prohibits discrimination for sexual orientation or gender identity, and therefore, the decision could have a national impact on healthcare workers and their employers. Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC is based on the case of a funeral home director who was fired after writing a letter to her employer about her transition from male to female. The Supreme Court heard arguments in the case Oct. 8.

"Without exception, we will oppose any type of discrimination based on an individual’s sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, race, religion, ethnicity, age or disability," Dr. Harris wrote.

Read the full op-ed here.

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