One of your best employees just came out as transgender and is trying to transition to their new gender. You are happy for them but also confused about this situation and want to make sure you don't do anything that could be discriminatory. Talking to a gender discrimination attorney can help you better understand what behaviors are appropriate here.

Accidental Discrimination Is a Possibility With Transgender Employees

Though people have been transgender since the dawn of humanity, only recently has this situation been better understood. As a result, many employers may find it difficult to know how to communicate with and treat an employee in this situation. Though you have very good intentions and want the person to be happy, the unique and unfamiliar situation here may lead you to accidental discrimination.

For example, you may not know how to refer to a transgender individual or what pronouns to use. This situation can be very complicated, and you want to make your employee feel happy and engaged. Most importantly, you want to avoid accidental discrimination simply because you aren't informed. As a result, you need to fully grasp this situation and how a gender discrimination lawyer can help.

What Is and Is Not Discrimination

If you employ transgender individuals or someone who just came out as mixed gender, and you aren't sure how to react, it is important to understand what is and what is not discrimination. Transphobia is the act of disliking or discriminating against someone simply because they are transgender. This means that verbal harassment or bullying of any kind as well as any negative acts such as poor performance reviews or bad work shifts on the basis of them being transgender are not acceptable.

For example, if you pass up a transgender individual for promotion simply because somebody else was more qualified, that is not discrimination. However, if you find out that somebody is transgender and you decide not to promote them because of this change, that is discrimination. And you are likely to be sued if you behave in such a way.

Therefore, you need to do what you can to avoid discrimination from you or any other employees in the workplace by seeking out gender discrimination law services right away. You want to do right by your employees, so let your lawyer help you better understand what you should. Of course, the best thing to do in any situation is to just treat your employees with respect and dignity.