Yesterday, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring released an opinion concluding that, to the extent existing federal law barring discrimination in employment on the basis of sex prohibits, by implication, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, Virginia's Human Rights Act also prohibits that discrimination.
The Virginia Equality Bar Association applauds and thanks the Attorney General for issuing this thorough, cautious, and helpful opinion. While Attorney General's opinions are not binding on the courts, they are considered persuasive authority. Historically, opinions from the Office of the Attorney General help to advance the understanding of existing Virginia law. Even if the reasoning of the opinion is not ultimately adopted by the courts, the debate it prompts may spur further legislative action.
VEBA welcomes this debate. As these issues unfold in the courts and general assembly, VEBA will continue its work to secure equality for the LGBT community and to oppose discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
You can read the entire opinion here.