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Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Update

August 5, 2022

H.R. 2116, Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair Act of 2022, is currently referred to the Senate after having passed the House of Representatives. Among other things, if passed, this Act would prohibit discrimination in employment on the basis of the individual’s hair texture or hairstyle, if the texture or style is commonly associated with a particular race or national origin. Enforcement would be incorporated into Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. H.R. 1065, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, also passed the House, and was received by the Senate over a year ago but has been referred to a Senate Committee. Additionally, the Department of Labor has announced that it will begin interpreting the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of sex under Section 188 of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act to include discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. It will continue to interpret this prohibition as include discrimination on the basis of gender identity and transgender status. 

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