By Julie Furer Stahr
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published new regulations on June 1 stating that transgender employees should be allowed to use the restroom designated for the gender with which the employee identifies. According to OSHA, requiring a transgender employee to use a gender-neutral bathroom or a bathroom that is inconsistent with the gender the person currently identifies with can create a fear for personal safety, or cause the employee not to use the restroom at all at work, both scenarios posing risk to personal safety and health.
The regulations also discuss a recent decision by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Tamara Lusardi v. John M. McHugh (No. 0120133395), in which the Commission determined that the U.S. Army discriminated against a transgender woman by refusing to let her use the women’s restroom and not addressing her with female pronouns after her gender transition.
The OSHA regulations, “A Guide to Restroom Access for Transgender Workers,” are available here: http://www.dol.gov/asp/policy-development/TransgenderBathroomAccessBestPractices.pdf.