The Obama administration has allowed
the deadline to appeal a transgender ruling to pass, signaling it
will not fight the lawsuit, the AP reported.
Tuesday was the last day the Department
of Justice could file an appeal in the half-million dollar judgment
for Diane Schroer, a transgender woman who sued the Library of
Congress after it rescinded a job offer.
“I applied for a job at the Library
of Congress as an international terrorism analyst to advise them on
our nation's counter terrorism operations. I was selected as the top
pick for the job,” Schroer says in a video. “When I told them I
would begin work as Diane, the offer was immediately rescinded. The
Library of Congress wanted David for the job, not Diane.”
Schroer spent twenty-five years in the
Army Special Forces as a man, retiring in 2004 a colonel. Once
retired, she began her transition to a woman, and told the Library of
Congress she would begin work as Diane. The next day the offer was
canceled, and she filed her lawsuit in 2005. A federal judge awarded
her $491,190 in back pay and damages because of sex discrimination
two months ago.
Bush administration officials had
argued that transgender discrimination was not covered under the
Civil Rights Act.
Schroer told the AP that the decision
to drop the appeal “gives me hope and restores some of my shaken
faith in what our country stands for.”
Last year, Schroer testified before
Congress in its first serious look at the varied issues involved in
transgender job discrimination. Openly gay Massachusetts
Representative Barney Frank is sponsoring an employment protections
bill that includes both sexual orientation and gender identity.
Schroer said Tuesday that transgender
discrimination in the workplace was “rampant” and urged Congress
to pass the bill.