American Journal of Criminal Justice

, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 203–217 | Cite as

Law enforcement employment discrimination based on sexual orientation: A selective review of case law



Homosexuality has been the subject of discrimination from Biblical times through the present. Homosexuals continue to experience pervasive forms of discrimination, including denial of employment which they may be otherwise qualified to obtain. One profession that is particularly open in its discrimination against homosexual employees is law enforcement. This article traces the development of homosexuals’ rights as they specifically relate to employment in law enforcement. Examples of common arguments raised by police administrators to justify such actions are examined with each illustrated by an example from relevant case law. Finally, areas in which the law has begun to provide greater protection for the employment rights of homosexuals are identified.


Sexual Orientation Penal Code Judicial Review Employment Discrimination Homosexual Conduct 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Heger, H. (1994).The men with the pink triangle: The true life and death story of homosexuals in the Nazi death camps. Boston: Alyson.Google Scholar
  2. Leinen, S. (1993).Gay cops. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Leviticus.The holy bible, old testament. Google Scholar
  4. Tex. Penal Code Ann. 43.21 (1999).Google Scholar

Cases Cited

  1. Bowers v. Hardwick, 478 U.S. 186 (1986).Google Scholar
  2. Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, 530 U.S. 640 (2000).Google Scholar
  3. Buttino v. Federal Bureau of Investigation, 801 F.Supp.298 (N.Dist.CA 1992). See also,Buttino v. Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1992 U.S. Dist. Lexis 21919 (order granting Buttino’s request for class certification).Google Scholar
  4. Childers v. Dallas Police Department, 513 F.Supp. 134 (N.D. Tex.1981),affirmed, 669 F.2d 732 (5th Cir.1982).Google Scholar
  5. City of Dallas v. England, 846 S.W.2d 957 (1993).Google Scholar
  6. England v. State of Texas, et al, No. 484,697 (200th Jud.Dist., February 11, 1992).Google Scholar
  7. Morales v.State of Texas, No. 461, 898 (200th Jud.Dist., March 15, 1991).Google Scholar
  8. Padula v. Webster, 822 F.2d 97 (D.C. Cir.1987).Google Scholar
  9. Pruitt v. Cheney, 963 F.2d 1160 (1992),cert, denied, 506 U.S. 1020 (1992).Google Scholar
  10. Texas v. Morales, 869 S.W.2d 941 (1994).Google Scholar
  11. Todd v. Navarro, 698 F.Supp. 871 (S.D. Fla.1988).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Criminal JusticeUniversity of Southern MissisippiHattiesburg

Personalised recommendations