(PatriotNewsDaily.com) – Tammy Fournier and her spouse chose to withdraw their child from their local school district due to a disagreement with the district’s approach to gender identity, resulting in their child’s eventual cessation of gender dysphoria symptoms.
Recently, a new policy regarding the use of gender pronouns was implemented by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), a move critiqued by a Heritage Foundation expert and ex-HHS official for potentially infringing upon employee rights, suggesting it could lead to dismissals for ‘misgendering’.
Roger Severino, formerly at the helm of HHS’s civil rights division and now with the Heritage Foundation, expressed to Fox News Digital his concern that federal employees are being coerced into denying biological realities, which could be in violation of their First Amendment rights. Severino, who shared this news on a social platform, emphasized that the mandate could compel employees to contradict their personal beliefs or face termination.
Severino, an alumnus of Harvard Law School, argued that such mandates could force individuals to betray their faith, adopt state-sanctioned ideologies, and renounce personal truths.
In contrast, the directive from HHS, as part of its ‘Gender Identity and Non-Discrimination Guidance’, affirms that it aims to protect employee rights regarding gender identity. It mandates that all employees be addressed by their self-identified names and pronouns to promote non-discriminatory, harassment-free workplaces.
These measures align with White House executive orders intended to address gender discrimination based on gender identity. According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the correct use of names and pronouns is essential for creating inclusive environments and upholding the dignity of all employees and applicants. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) clarifies that while occasional slip-ups are not considered harassment, persistent intentional misnaming or misgendering can contribute to a hostile work environment.
Assistant HHS Secretary Rachel Levine, in an internal video, affirms the validity of one’s self-identified gender, reflecting the policy that allows employees to use facilities and dress according to their gender identity.
Severino criticized these policies, labeling them ‘Orwellian’ and expressing concern over the implications of such rules in workplace settings like locker rooms. He stressed that previously, exposing oneself to the opposite sex in the workplace was a clear civil rights violation, but under the new policy, those uncomfortable are expected to remove themselves from the situation.
Highlighting the dilemma faced by employees, Severino contends that the policy forces them to choose between hiding their beliefs to maintain employment or standing against the policy and risking their job security. He cites a Supreme Court ruling that underscores the right to political dissent, equating the current situation to a coerced allegiance to a symbolic ‘Rainbow flag’.
In summary, Severino urges that employees’ rights to free speech and faith must be protected against policies that compel them to speak or act against those beliefs.
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