Victoria Rodriguez-Roldan

Victoria Rodriguez-Roldan

The National LGBTQ Task Force and the District of Columbia’s Office of Human Rights today published “Valuing Transgender Applicants and Employees,” a “first-of-its-kind” resource to help eliminate discrimination against transgender and gender nonconforming individuals in the workplace.

The booklet offers in-depth “best practices” to help employers create “genuinely inclusive and welcoming” environments.

Victoria Rodriguez-Roldan, Trans/Gender Nonconforming Justice Project director for the Task Force, said in a press release, “Everyone, including transgender people, deserve a fair chance at a good paying job and the ability to provide for themselves and their families. Transgender people face formidable discrimination and harassment in the workplace. This new resource provides vital recommendations for employers and human resource specialists looking to ensure that transgender people are treated with dignity and respect in the workplace.”

Monica Palacio, director of the DC Office of Human Rights, noted that the District of Columbia  is “fortunate to have a strong law” protecting transgender people from employment discrimination. But most jurisdictions offer no such protections.

And even in places where protections are in place, Palacio said, “many times employers that want to create welcoming environments are unsure of how best to do that. We believe this best practices guide will be an important starting place for those employers that want to build transgender-inclusive workplaces.”

According to the 2011 National Transgender Discrimination Survey report, 90 percent of transgender people in the U.S. report experiencing harassment, discrimination and mistreatment in the workplace. In 2015, the DC Office of Human Rights report “Qualified and Transgender” showed that 48 percent of employers surveyed appeared to prefer at least one less-qualified applicant perceived as cisgender over a more-qualified applicant perceived as transgender.

Currently, 19 states and the District of Columbia have explicit workplace nondiscrimination protections based on gender identity and expression.

Go here to read the report.