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Sexual Orientation Employment Discrimination: Secondary Sources

Secondary Sources Overview

Secondary sources are a great place to start when researching any topic.  Provided on this page are secondary sources helpful when researching sexual orientation employment discrimination.  

Below are three treatises available on Westlaw -- all three treatises have pros and cons depending on your research needs!  On the side of the page, you'll find free resources available on the web.

Manual on Employment Discrimination and Civil Rights Actions in the Federal Courts

If you are just getting started learning about sexual orientation employment discrimination, I recommend the Manual on Employment Discrimination and Civil Rights Actions in the Federal Courts.  

This treatise is ideal for those getting started, because it is easy to read and navigate.  Chapter 1, subchapter K, section 1:64 gives a broad overview of discrimination based on sexual orientation.  This source is great for those not familiar with the history of sexual orientation employment discrimination, because it provides an in-depth constitutional overview of how sexual orientation employment discrimination law has evolved since Title VII was enacted.  This source is also useful if you want to double check you have not missed any important cases on the topic.  It was last updated in October 2016, and costs $74.40/month.

Best for: Getting started, learning about history, and finding important Supreme Court cases

Tradeoffs:  Does not provide information on protections under state and local law

In conclusion, while I think this treatise is a great source, I would not consult it regularly, because I am not a just "getting started" learning about the topic. Once you learn about the history and constitutional overview of sexual orientation employment discrimination, this treatise is not useful for much else. 

Sex-Based Employment Discrimination

If you want more specific information than provided in the Manual on Employment Discrimination, Sex-Based Employment Discrimination provides not only a constitutional overview of sexual orientation employment discrimination, but an overview of protections for federal employees, state or municipal employees, private employees, state law protection for private employees, and coverage under local law and ordinances.  It was last updated in September 2016, and costs $60.80/month.

Best for: Learning about protections in the public sector, and protections under state and local law.

Tradeoffs: May be intimidating to use for someone new to researching the topic, useful for educational purposes, but less useful for practitioners. 

In conclusion, I would regularly consult this source as a student, because it provides in-depth overview of federal, state, and local law. However, I would not regularly consult this source as practitioner, because it still is not specific enough.  A practitioner needs more specific information to his or her jurisdiction, and detailed information regarding procedural and enforcement issues, which this treatise does not provide.

Employment Discrimination Coordinator

If you want state-specific information, look to the Employment Discrimination Coordinator.  For every state, this treatise provides specific information useful for practitioners, information such as remedies, administrative proceedings, exceptions to discriminatory prohibitions, jury instructions, etc.  It was last updated in December 2016, and costs $6,324/year.

Best for: State-specific information, useful for practitioners

Tradeoffs: Difficult to navigate, too specific for those just getting started

In conclusion, I would regularly consult this source, especially when I go out to practice.  As someone who knows the history, background, and SCOTUS caselaw on the topic, I do not need to consult with treatises that only provide broad overviews of the topic. Employment Discrimination Coordinator provides state-by-state analysis and information a practitioner would need to know, such as enforcement and procedural issues.

Free Resources on the Web

Littler Mendelson P.C. Blog

Littler Mendelson is the largest global employment and labor law practice with more than 1,2000 attorneys in over 75 offices worldwide. It was ranked one of the best Labor and Employment law firms in the nation by US. News & World Report.  Littler Mendelson provides in-depth updates on all things labor and employment, including sexual orientation employment discrimination. Littler's blog is always up-to-date.  For example, after the EEOC Baldwin v. Foxx ruling came out on July 16, 2016, Littler published an article on the ruling four days later. (see 

JD Supra Blog

JD Supra provides updates, commentary, and analysis on sexual orientation employment discrimination issues. Unlike Littler Mendelson's blog, articles provided by JD Supra are written by attorneys from various law firms, such as Mintz Levin, Ogletree Deakins, FordHarrison, and many more.