An appeals court on Thursday declined
to rehear a case involving a security guard who claims she was fired
because she's a lesbian.
In March, a three-judge panel of the
11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled 2-1 that
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not protect workers
from discrimination based on sexual orientation.
The plaintiff in the case is Jameka
Evans, a former security guard at Georgia Regional Hospital in
Savannah. In her lawsuit, filed in 2015, Evans claims that she was
targeted for harassment and effectively drummed out of her job
because she's gay.
Evans is represented by Lambda Legal,
which said that it would file an appeal to the Supreme Court.
Other federal courts have reached the
opposite conclusion, including the 7th Circuit Court of
Appeals in Chicago and the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in
court finds existing law protects gay workers from discrimination.)
Justin Levitt, a professor at Loyola
Law School in Los Angeles, told the
AP that it's uncertain when the Supreme Court will take up the
“The issue is ripe whenever the
Supreme Court decides the issue is ripe,” Levitt said. “Having a
distinct circuit split like this, some of the justices will be
comfortable letting it percolate a little bit more, and some may want
to bring it to resolution sooner.”