Updated federal workplace guidelines protect pronouns, bathrooms and abortion 

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The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) updated the federal workplace guidelines after a quarter of a century to protect pronouns, bathrooms and abortion. 

The new guidance, released on Monday by the federal agency, fortified transgender employees’ rights such as being protected from misgendering and using the bathroom that matches their gender identity. Employees not complying with the guidelines are committing unlawful workplace harassment.

The agency’s update to the guidelines — the first in 25 years — showcases how it would enforce the anti-bias laws, although it is not legally binding. They came according to the legal standards shielding workers from harassment in relation to the protected characteristics, ranging from color, race, religion to sex. 

Within the last category, gender identity and sexual orientation are included along with pregnancy. 

Abortion was also included, as the discrimination toward employees who decide to have one is considered sex discrimination. 

“Harassment, both in-person and online, remains a serious issue in America’s workplaces,” EEOC Chair Charlotte A. Burrows said in a statement. “The EEOC’s updated guidance on harassment is a comprehensive resource that brings together best practices for preventing and remedying harassment and clarifies recent developments in the law.” 

“The guidance incorporates public input from stakeholders across the country, is aligned with our Strategic Enforcement Plan, and will help ensure that individuals understand their workplace rights and responsibilities.”

The expanding guidance has been criticized by conservatives and religious groups. 

Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.), Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman, criticized the updated guidelines and the EEOC, saying has “detached itself from reality.” 

“The EEOC has detached itself from reality— today’s final guidance is nothing more than a homage to leftist activists who want Americans to conform to their warped political ideology,” Foxx said in a Monday statement. “From the mandated use of pronouns to a denial of biological facts, the EEOC seems more interested in appeasing the mob than undertaking commonsense policymaking to protect workers. File this away as another item in the long list of failures spearheaded by this agency.”

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