I posted this morning the message a McDonald's manager left on a transgender applicant's machine. Here's the transcript the TLDEF put together, via Autumn:
TLDEF Files Employment Discrimination Complaint with Florida Commission on Human Relations Against McDonald's for Refusing to Hire Transgender Woman"You went to (indistinguishable) McDonalds today. It doesn't matter how many times you go down there: You will not get hired. We do not hire faggots.
"You lied to me. You told me you was a woman. And then you lied to me. You told me you were seventeen. I can't believe you. You're a lying brother (indistinguishable). How could you ever lie to me? We will never..."
This person doesn't seem to be making many distinctions between different kinds of "faggots," proving, once again, that distinctions made within the LGBTQ community are often only visible to us. Sure, most people would get the distinction between transgender and gay, but some people just aren't willing to listen to an explanation. Something tells me this manager wouldn't be amenable to a discourse on the DSM-IV and the history of the LGBTQ movement and stop and think that maybe he was denouncing the wrong sort of faggot.
In the end, though, this case is sad all around. Here's someone applying for a job that probably doesn't pay a living wage, that has no security and is unlikely to have any benefits. And she got rejected from that job. Do we realize how far gone we are when a group of people has been determined unfit to even work for unrealistically low compensation?
Currently, the TLDEF and Bellamy are building shame on this case, as they should be. But there aren't any specific protections for her under Florida law:
In Florida, while no law explicitly addresses discrimination based on gender identity, administrative agencies in Florida have ruled that transgender people are protected by the Florida Human Rights Act's prohibitions on sex and disability discrimination. The Competitive Workforce Bill, which would add gender identity and sexual orientation to the Florida Civil Rights Act, was introduced in the Florida legislature on November 20.
Orlando doesn't have a trans-inclusive ordinance either. Even if they did, what's to prevent this from happening just over the border in a suburb?
Usually discrimination is a lot more subtle than this. But these shocking cases make LGBT discrimination a public issue. Maybe the manager in question would have found another way to discriminate against Bellamy, maybe McDonald's would have had better manager training and he would have thought twice.
We can't really know unless the law passes, but at least there would be redress in situation's like this.