Glenn v. Brumby

Plaintiff filed a complaint seeking declaratory and injunctive relief pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 1983 for alleged violations of her rights under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, claiming that defendant fired her from her job as an editor because of sex discrimination. Plaintiff also claimed that her constitutional rights were violated because defendant terminated her employment due to her medical condition, known as Gender Identity Disorder. The district court granted summary judgment to plaintiff on her sex discrimination claim and granted summary judgment to defendant on plaintiff's medical discrimination claim. Both parties timely appealed. The court held that a government agent violated the Equal Protection Clause's prohibition of sex-based discrimination when he or she fired a transgender or transsexual employee because of his or her gender non-conformity. The court also held that defendant had advanced no reason that could qualify as a governmental purpose, much less an "important" governmental purpose, and even less than that, a "sufficiently important government purpose" that was achieved by firing plaintiff because of her gender non-conformity. Therefore, the court affirmed the judgment of the district court granting summary judgment in favor of plaintiff on her sex-discrimination claim. In light of this decision, which provided plaintiff with all the relief she sought, there was no need to address plaintiff's cross-appeal.