A transgender employee filed an employment discrimination suit against the Fargo hospital at which she used to work. Faye Seidler, who also underwent hormone therapy at Sanford hospital, claims she faced discrimination from managers based on her gender identity.
According to the Associated Press, Seidler notified her employer, Sanford Health, that during her 90-day review, she would notify those who considered her to be male of her actual sex and gender. During the course of these 90 days, however, Seidler alleges she was denied her request to use the women’s locker room, which resulted in a $300 jacket being vandalized. Furthermore, the suit claims an email was sent out by one supervisor to 16 other employees, “expressing exasperation” with Seidler’s request to be treated as a female, the AP reported.
A Sanford Health spokesperson explained to the Associated Press that its employment policies prohibit discrimination of any kind, including against sexual orientation.
However, Seidler’s attorney, Joshua Newville, told The Advocate that the healthcare provider’s response displays a fundamental misunderstanding of the issue, as discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity are not one in the same.
“This case isn’t about sexual orientation,” Newville explained to The Advocate. “It’s about gender. It is my sincere hope that this lawsuit will, at a bare minimum, encourage employers to make a more sincere and concerted effort to more fully understand these issues in order to prevent the kind of workplace discrimination my client felt she suffered.”