Employment Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity in the Public Sector

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Transgender individuals are disproportionately affected by discrimination in the workplace. In 2011, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality released the report “Injustice at Every Turn,” which details the discrimination faced by transgender and gender non-conforming individuals. The report revealed that across all employment sectors 90% of respondents reported experiencing harassment or mistreatment on the job or took actions to avoid it, and 47% experienced some sort of adverse job outcome (did not get a job, were denied a promotion, or were fired), 26% of which lost a job due to being transgender (Grant et al. 51-53).
In the public sector specifically, there are approximately one
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• In 2002 to 2003, 37% of gay or transgender state and local government workers with law degrees indicated they had been verbally harassed and more than 25% reported experiencing some other form of discrimination (Burns 9).
These findings demonstrate that discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity is a major problem and exists in many areas of the public sector.
Economic effects of employment discrimination
In addition to the negative effects experienced by transgender individuals, discrimination based on gender identity negatively affects discriminatory employers and society in general. According to John Donahue, the neoclassical model of the labor market can be extended to analyze labor market discrimination. Discrimination is introduced to the model as an aversion by employers to certain groups even though all groups are equally productive. Such employment discrimination results in market inefficiency and hurts the economy. The benefits of an efficient market include: more goods and services that will be available to satisfy wants and needs of citizens, and nonmaterial benefits emerge from greater economic productivity. Donahue reasons that there are political advantages to an efficient economy because economically developed countries have stable democracies because affluence tends to reduce
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