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Courts divided over Title VII language

Companies in Florida and other states are generally bound by the terms of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. However, appeals courts across the country are divided as to whether it protects against discrimination based on sexual orientation. The Second Circuit and Seventh Circuit have said that it does, but the Eight Circuit has not yet made that determination. This is important for one man who lived in Illinois but was offered a job in Missouri.

The job offer was reportedly rescinded when the company found out that he was gay. As Illinois is part of the Seventh Circuit, he would have been protected if he was employed in his home state. However, Missouri is part of the Eight Circuit. There are many companies and government agencies that want to see federal protection for workers based on sexual orientation. Supporters include Microsoft, Levi Strauss and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

However, other groups believe that any change should be made by passing a new law as opposed to allowing courts to interpret laws as they are currently written. The Department of Justice is one key party that takes this view, and the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty has also come out in support of a legislative solution to the issue.

Workers in Boca Raton, Florida who believe that their rights were violated may want to take legal action. This may include filing a lawsuit or a charge with the EEOC. In some cases, a resolution might be reached by talking directly with an employer. An attorney may be able to help an individual obtain a favorable outcome in a case regardless of how it is resolved. This may result in a person receiving compensation for back pay and other punitive damages.

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