Published online by Cambridge University Press: 01 October 2020
Chapter 4 examines three cases highlighting intersectional approaches to appearance discrimination. The rewritten Jespersen v. Harrah’s Operating Co. exposes the harm caused when employers have gender-specific grooming policies. It rejects the unequal burdens test and concludes that any sex-specific grooming policy violates Title VII unless the policy is a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ). The rewritten opinion of EEOC v. Catastrophe Management Solutions holds that refusing to hire black women who wear their hair in locs is race discrimination under Title VII. It explores the history of discrimination against black women because of their hair and eliminates the immutability requirement, confirming that discrimination against race-related cultural practices is race discrimination. Finally, the rewritten opinion in Webb v. City of Philadelphia reverses the lower court’s grant of summary judgment to a City that fired a Muslim female police officer because she wore a religious headscarf. The rewritten opinion focuses on the intersectional harm based on sex and religion, and concludes that the City offered no evidence of harm at all, much less evidence of undue burden.