InstagramAsset 1logo-3
News

Celebrating US Supreme Court's Landmark Decision as #OurJacobs

Jacobs Chief Legal and Administrative Officer and PRISM Executive Sponsor Joanne Caruso reflects on what yesterday’s milestone U.S. Supreme Court ruling echoes for equality and inclusion.

Jacobs Chief Legal and Administrative Officer and PRISM Executive Sponsor Joanne Caruso reflects on what yesterday’s milestone U.S. Supreme Court ruling echoes for equality and inclusion.

Two years ago when I became the Executive Sponsor of PRISM, our employee network group for LGBTQI+ employees and their allies, I learned that in a majority of states in the United States, discrimination by employers on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity was legal. To say that I was surprised and shocked that this was the case in 2018 is an understatement.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a landmark decision which holds that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination against an individual on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The decision resolved three cases before the Court – in two of those cases, employees were fired from their jobs when their employer found out they were gay; in the third, a transgender woman was fired when she courageously notified her employer that she decided to have gender reassignment surgery and to live and work full-time as a woman. In analyzing whether these actions violated the law, the Supreme Court, in a 6-3 decision, explained that “[a]n employer who fires an individual for being homosexual or transgender fires that person for traits or actions it would not have questioned in members of a different sex. Sex plays a necessary and undisguisable role in the decision, exactly what Title VII forbids.”

At Jacobs, our policies already prohibit such discrimination and this ruling doesn’t change our commitment to non-discriminatory behavior against any employee, including our LGBTQI+ colleagues. However, the importance of this ruling to our LGBTQI+ employees, their families, and to anyone who believes in equality, inclusion and non-discrimination cannot be overstated.

As we have all been seeing and discussing these past few weeks, there is so much more that still needs to be done to ensure basic and fundamental civil and human rights for all. This historic ruling is a significant step forward in that fight and should be celebrated.

Joanne Caruso
Jacobs EVP, Chief Legal and Administrative Officer
Executive Sponsor PRISM network

 

At Jacobs, we’re always looking for dynamic and engaged people to join our team. Bring your passion, your ingenuity and your vision. Let’s see the impact we can create, together.

Article options