Michael Hamar

Virginia Court Rules Executive Order 1 (2006) Gives Gays No Cause of Action

Filed By Michael Hamar | June 24, 2009 11:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Living, Politics, Politics

The Circuit Court for the City of Martinsville has ruled in Michael Ware Moore v. Virginia Museum of Natural History that Executive Order 1 (2006) signed by Virginia Governor (and DNC Chair) Tim Kaine provides no cause of action to gay Virginians fired for discrimination based on sexual orientation, nor does it waive the Commonwealth of Virginia's defense of sovereign immunity against fired gay employees seeking redress. Executive Order 1 (2006) provides in relevant part as follows:

This policy specifically prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age, political affiliation, or against otherwise qualified persons with disabilities.

Other than Executive Order 1 (2006) gay and lesbian Virginians have no state law protections against employment discrimination.

Michael W. Moore, who sought protection under Executive Order No. 1 (2006) was an employee of the Virginia Museum of Natural History until the late afternoon of November 14, 2006, when he maintains he was forced to involuntarily resign by former Museum Executive Director, Timothy Gette because Moore is gay.

Prior to November 14, 2006, Moore had received an employee performance evaluation on October 20, 2006, in which he was evaluated as a "Contributor" based on the Employee Work Profile - Performance Evaluation form signed by both Gette and Nancy Bell, a/k/a Nancy Bell Dethlesfan, Moore's supervisor. This evaluation qualified Moore for a pay increase.

In summarily dismissing Moore's appeal from a determination by the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management, the Circuit Court for the City of Martinsville, Virginia, ignored numerous U.S. Constitutional issues raised in the case and suggests that Virginia state employees leave their federal constitutional rights at the door. Moore is considering filing a further appeal from the ruling.

As I have said before, LGBT citizens considering a move to Virginia from progressive states need to truly think twice before moving to a state where LGBT citizens are in essence 3rd class citizens.

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