Week 5 Discussion 2
“Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered Employees in the Public Sector Workforce” Please respond to the following:
From the e-Activity, analyze the two news events published within the past 12 months related to sexual harassment laws for or against lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals.
The 49-year-old single mom Jackie Biskupski became the first openly-gay person to be elected as mayor of Salt Lake City. Her victory sends a powerful message to all LGBT members that sexual orientation will never be a limitation to public service. What makes this victory extra special is that Biskupski’s’s sexuality was never an issue, seeing that Biskupski has been openly gay since 1989. I chose this article because I felt like it was a very big deal, because we’ve come to the point in some communities where people are valued on their merits, instead of some category that they’ve been placed in. In the case of Tamara Lusardi v. U.S Army, Lusardi proved that she was discriminated against. After Ms. Lusardi, a disabled veteran, transitioned from male to female on the job, her supervisor continued to call her “sir” and “he,” and she was told that she could not use the same restroom as all other female employees. Lusardi was required to use a single-user, gender neutral restroom. Ms. Lusardi was reprimanded by her supervisor on the few occasions that she used the general women’s restroom because the single-user restroom was out of order. It was founded that the Army’s restriction of Lusardi’s restroom use was inappropriate and subjected her to significant discomfort and humiliation. In addition, Ms. Lusardi’s supervisor repeatedly used male pronouns and her old name in front of her co-workers and others. As a result, the Department of the Army has agreed to provide sensitivity training about working with LGBT coworkers for employees and supervisors.
Propose at least two ways your agency plans to address these events, highlighting two challenges to identifying and prosecuting offenders within your agency.
The FDA is still under fire for possible discrimination, even after making progress towards equal equality. For decades, there was a lifetime ban disallowing gay and bisexual men to donate blood. This ban carried on for 30 years and up until recently stood firm. Within the last year, the FDA created a proposal stating that gay and bisexual men can donate blood (but wait, there’s a stipulation) as long as they have not had sex with another man in the past year. Which means the policy still prevents men from donating blood solely based on their sexual orientation instead of a more modern individual risk assessment. Although a one year deferral is a step in the right direction compared to the previous ruling, it is still viewed by some as discriminatory.
Debate It: Take a position for or against this statement: A public sector agency should provide medical benefits to employees who choose to have surgery to change their sex. Provide at least two reasons and examples to support your position.
I’m for transgender surgery and a workplace should cover it. I feel that insurance is insurance. What an employee chooses to do with that insurance should be irrelevant. I feel the same about cosmetic surgery; same with birth control. If a person wants to alter their body, they should have no barriers in doing so as long as it falls within legal limitations. If a company feels that getting a nose job is a luxury, charge the employee a higher monthly premium. During open enrollment, employees have the option of choosing the type of insurance policy they feel best fits them and their family. A separate much more costly policy should be offered for those who want to be covered by such operational procedures such as cosmetic surgery and sex reassignment surgery. At the end of the day, we are all going to the doctor whether it’s to see an plastic surgeon or a neurological surgeon.
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