R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Aimee Stephens (Amicus)

At a Glance

Date Filed: 

July 3, 2019

Current Status 

The Center for Constitutional Rights and co-counsel filed an amicus brief in support of Aimee Stephens with over 45 signatories on July 3, 2019. Oral argument will take place on October 8, 2019 in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Co-Counsel 

Transgender Law Center
Akerman LLP

Case Description 

The Center for Constitutional Rights and the Transgender Law Center filed an amicus brief with the United States Supreme Court on behalf of more than 45 non-profit and grassroots organizations dedicated to eradicating discrimination against transgender individuals. The brief voices support for plaintiff Aimee Stephens, a woman from Michigan who was fired from her job as a funeral home director for being transgender. In this critical civil rights case, the Supreme Court will decide whether the Civil Rights Act of 1964 guarantees protections against workplace discrimination for the 1.4 million transgender people living in the United States. This case hinges on the Court’s interpretation of Title VII of the landmark act, which prohibits discrimination “because of … sex.”

By elevating the voices of more than 30 transgender people who, like Ms. Stephens, have experienced workplace discrimination firsthand, the brief explains to the Court that discrimination against transgender people is always "because of sex" and grounded in sex stereotypes. The brief also illustrates for the Court that transgender people face poverty, homelessness, and criminalization when they are turned away from jobs without legal recourse.

Along with the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Transgender Law Center, the following organizations signed on to the brief:

Ackerman Institute for the Family
Audre Lorde Project
BreakOUT!
Campaign for Southern Equality
Casa Ruby
Freedom Overground
Garden of Peace, Inc.
Gender Benders
Gender Justice
Genders & Sexualities Alliance Network
Griffin-Gracy Educational Retreat & Historical Center
Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project
Invisible Men
Lavender Rights Project
Louisiana Trans Advocates
Maine Transgender Network, Inc.
Marsha P. Johnson Institute
Maryland Trans*Unity
National Black Justice Coalition
National Center for Transgender Equality
National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance
No Justice No Pride
Nollie Jenkins Family Center, Inc.
OutRight Action International
Positively Trans
Ruth Ellis Center, Inc.
Solutions NOT Punishment Collaborative
Strategic Transgender Alliance for Radical Reform
TAKE Resource Center
TGI Justice Project
TGI Network of Rhode Island
Trans Can Work
Trans Empowerment Project
Trans Lifeline
Trans Masculine Advocacy Network
Trans Pride Initiative
TRANScending Barriers
Transformative Justice Law Project of Illinois
Transgender Assistance Program of Virginia
Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico
TransLife Care – Chicago House and Social Service Agency
TransOhio, Inc.
TransSOCIAL, Inc.
Whitman-Walker Health

Case Timeline

October 8, 2019
Supreme Court oral argument
October 8, 2019
Supreme Court oral argument
July 3, 2019
Center for Constitutional Rights and co-counsel file amicus brief with over 45 signatories and 30 personal stories
July 3, 2019
Center for Constitutional Rights and co-counsel file amicus brief with over 45 signatories and 30 personal stories
June 26, 2019
Supreme Court briefs of employee parties