Cornell Law Review


Although the United States has made great strides toward equality for its LGBTQ+ citizens in recent years, South Africa has demonstrated far greater progress concerning equal protection and employment non-discrimination of its LGBTQ+ citizens. The South African Constitution, South African Constitutional Court cases, and laws passed by the South African Parliament all mandate that LGBTQ+ South Africans be treated equally to their heterosexual counterparts. Discrimination against LGBTQ+ South Africans is expressly forbidden— including in the employment context. The United States still lacks comprehensive federal employment non-discrimination laws or workplace protections for LGBTQ+ individuals. Extending Title VII—either via court decision or by passing the Equality Act—will provide robust workplace protections on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.