As President-Elect Donald Trump moved into the White House on Inauguration Day last Friday, the excitement and political tensions were not confined to the nation’s capital. LGBTQ rights supporters decorated with rainbow ties and socks filled the Second Circuit courtroom that morning to hear oral argument on a charged issue in Matthew Christiansen v. Omnicom Group, Inc. et al., No. 16-748-cv.
In this case, Matthew Christiansen, a homosexual advertising executive, sued his employer, DDB Worldwide Communications Group Inc., for discrimination based on sexual orientation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII prohibits discrimination by an employer against an employee on the basis of “sex,” but does not explicitly prohibit discrimination on the basis of “sexual orientation.”