St. Louis, Mo., Mar 7, 2019 / 00:08 am
The Missouri state Supreme Court issued two discrimination rulings last week related to sexual orientation and gender identity, both of which could lead to changes in the way discrimination is defined in the state, a Catholic public policy advocate told CNA.
Tyler McClay, an attorney and executive director of the Missouri Catholic Conference, expressed concern about the rulings, as it is now possible for "discrimination" under the Missouri Human Rights Act to be redefined if these plaintiffs win their court cases.
In one case, Harold Lampley, a gay man, sued the Missouri Commission on Human Rights in 2015, alleging that because he does not conform to "stereotypical expectations" of how a male should behave, he and his friend Rene Frost were harassed in their workplace.
Though the circuit court originally threw out the case, the Supreme Court's ruling last week will allow Lampley to sue his former employer, with judges writing in the opinion that the question of whether Missouri's human rights laws protect people from sex-based stereotyping had not yet been addressed.