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Los Angeles Trans Woman Starts Business to Help Companies Conform to Transgender Rights Laws

Recently, transgender rights have been a hot topic in news headlines and have been fiercely debated in California and across the country. While acceptance of LGBT individuals is certainly expanding nationally, California employment law offers some of the strongest protections to LGBT employees in the nation. But many California businesses don't know how to properly handle transgender employees who are transitioning on the job. Some aren't even aware what is legal under California employment law when it comes to gender discrimination - particularly discrimination based on gender identity.

Enter Carolyn Weiss, veteran employee of the City of Los Angeles who saw this as an opportunity to help local businesses abide by transgender rights laws, rules and regulations with the launch of her company, Transgender Business Services.

Recently, transgender rights have been a hot topic in news headlines and have been fiercely debated in California and across the country. While acceptance of LGBT individuals is certainly expanding nationally, California employment law offers some of the strongest protections to LGBT employees in the nation. But many California businesses don't know how to properly handle transgender employees who are transitioning on the job. Some aren't even aware what is legal under California employment law when it comes to gender discrimination - particularly discrimination based on gender identity.

Enter Carolyn Weiss, veteran employee of the City of Los Angeles who saw this as an opportunity to help local businesses abide by transgender rights laws, rules and regulations with the launch of her company, Transgender Business Services.

Recognizing a Growing Need to Understand California Transgender Rights Laws

Carolyn Weiss is a 32-year veteran employee of the City of Los Angeles and President of Transgender Business Services. Weiss also went through her own transition at age 55. Her work within the transgender community over the years helped her see a growing need to start her company because she found that "the average business owner has no idea how to handle a transitioning employee."

California employment law can be complicated to the average employer especially when it comes to new and emerging transgender rights laws. And while the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) makes it illegal for employers to discriminate against transgender employees, the DFEH just recently released new guidelines for employers regarding transgender discrimination in the workplace.

Weiss says that her company both provides employers with the knowledge to legally abide by these laws, and can help transgender employees feel more comfortable on the job. "There is a big and growing market for these services," she says. "Outside of transgender-owned businesses, which are rare, business people are becoming aware that anybody in their employ could be transgender and are just waiting for the right time to come out. Employers just don't know who could be transgender - it could be anyone."

Weiss also says that retail companies should be aware of transgender rights laws as they apply to clients and customers. Her company helps them understand the laws because "a business could get sued by the individual or the State" if a transgender client or customer is handled inappropriately in public.

Weiss Offers Services to Both Los Angeles Transgender Employees & Businesses

Weiss' service offerings for Los Angeles businesses include transgender rights law 101 training sessions for both managers and employees. She can also help Los Angeles companies with writing non-discrimination company policies that comply with transgender rights laws, offer help to human resources staff members to develop transition plans for employees, provide one-on-one counseling to guide both managers and employees through the transition process, and much more.

In addition to Weiss' experience of going through her own transition, she also has a background in transgender counseling. For seven years, she has offered online counseling to transgender people, served on the West Hollywood Transgender Advisory Board for three years, and is the Vice President and Assistant Forum Director of a transgender suicide prevention and support site. You can learn more about her background and prior speaking engagements here.

Read the original story on LGBTWeekly.com

If you feel that your employer is discriminating against you due to your gender transitioning, they could be violating California employment law. Contact our experienced and passionate California transgender discrimination attorneys for your free consultation today.

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